I was thinking about asking a friend from church over for dinner the other day, and then I started playing that out in my head as to how it would go: What would I serve? When I would clean? Should I re-arrange the furniture? Maybe the shabby-chic-garage-sale look in my living room should be addressed?

And then I thought about our dinner prayer that we say together. And I wondered if it would be considered epically brilliant to our church pals, or an epic fail dud.

Quite frankly, we said our prayer when the 12-year-old neighbor had dinner with us a few nights ago. She was neither impressed about the prayer nor the very delicious vegan red beans and rice I served.

My daughter, Lucy, however, showed pride in our family prayer, not so much the dinner. “What’s for dessert?” translated quickly to, “Mom, we gotta make up for this with something sweet.”

Still, we all said the prayer, we all ate the food. We all are thoroughly nourished for one more day.

Last week, we heard about how the Big Bang Theory. I was a bit overwhelmed at the mere mention of protons and neutrons. But I listened. Now, when I see a video of a waterfall, or I watch the snow fall in my front yard, or even the light dancing in the water below me in the pool as I’m swimming…it’s a bigger deal now. It’s more beautiful. I still don’t quite understand the actual science of it all, but I know enough to see a little more beauty in it. I’m taking life’s landscape less for granted, I suppose.

So, when I see astronauts “earth-gaze” like what played on Darkwood Brew this week, I think of God orchestrating all of humanity, and life, ALL life, and I’m in awe that God knows me. In comparison I’m a tiny atom in this universe. And God knows me. It’s amazing and it changes my whole way of thinking.

Skype guest, Rev. Michael Dowd spoke in this week’s episode about the Religious Naturalist, and I was totally validated, once again. I like to come up with theories on whimsy. I’ve probably spurted out to very few people in my life that I kinda think heaven and hell are right now, right here on Earth. Makes sense to me. But I have a hard time explaining it to others, so I just keep my awesome theory to myself. Then Rev. Dowd goes and makes the same claim but with much more data and way more eloquently, making my claim valid. I like that guy.

I’d also like to put it out there that when I was a child, I assumed the moon was heaven. I’m hoping through this series someone will prove me right again. Anyone?

I think what I’ve deduced so far in this series is that I don’t have to understand science wholly, but I do have a responsibility to try, to be open to learning and open-minded. It turns out, that is exactly how I feel about my faith.

And suddenly, my prayer that I made up to teach my kids doesn’t seem so simple anymore. It’s perfect for me, our family, and what I’m trying to teach them, and extend into learning for myself.

“Thank you for this food. Thank you for this day. Thank you for this family.”

It’s simple. If you put it under a microscope and narrowed in on it there’s gratitude, acknowledgement of nourishment, for all that can happen in your day good or bad, and community. But if you pull back, and look at it from a greater distance, it starts to take on a better focus. That’s my hope at least for my kids. Because in teaching them as much as I can, I’m learning. And that’s not so overwhelming at all. It’s Awesome. I better go call my friend and ask them over for dinner.


On a very side note – did y’all know you can get notes from the Universe? I wanted to share it with you because each day I receive my note, I think, “I should post this on Darkwood Brew.” And so, I’m following through. I promise I’m getting no kickbacks or perks from this one. But it’s fun and it’s free. And, c’mon – it’s from the Universe!!!  Just click here and sign up.

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