For whatever reason, the Lord has encouraged me to keep my eye on the bald cypress in my back yard. It was so fresh and green last summer!
And every fall it goes through a beautiful transformation – my little touch of an actual autumn in Sugar Land (one thing that I do miss from the Midwest). So I thought I would capture it in photos, with Lent ultimately in mind. And then the feast of the Transfiguration came, with a homily that included these words from St. Gregory of Nyssa based on: “Blessed are the pure of heart for they shall see God.” Matthew 5:8
“It does not say that it is blessed to know something about the Lord God, but that it is blessed to have God within oneself. Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
I do not think that this is simply intended to promise a direct vision of God if one purifies one’s soul. On the other hand, perhaps the magnificence of this saying is hinting at the same thing… The kingdom of God is within you. That is, we are to understand that when we have purged our souls of every illusion… we will see our own beauty as an image of the divine nature.”
St. Gregory of Nyssa
I don't really have many words to offer other than to let the pictures speak to the heart what they will.
Dear Lord, please help me shed whatever hides the Light you have placed in me. I can see the seedpods left behind in the crape myrtle branches too. Sometimes we only really see what fruit you have brought forth in us when we are stripped bare once again. What appears to be dead is not. Master, you alone know; we must wait and watch and listen and hope. Thank you for the mysterious gift of the cycles of our lives.
Jesus, I trust in you!
Lynn Wells is a St. Laurence parishioner and spiritual director.