Open hands.

(Photo taken near St. Augustine, FL.)

(Photo taken near St. Augustine, FL.)

Last night I dreamt I was travelling somewhere – with my former roommate Lisa and our friend Ashley and possibly one other soul or two. We arrived at our initial destination by what means I know not. A plane? A glider? A hot air balloon? Our landing was smooth, gentle, effortless.

Suddenly I was in wide-open space, the flat ground covered with grass that was spare but green, the sky wide and blue with wisps of cloud. I could see a city in the distance and a vast ocean to my right. I looked around and saw the bay and waterways close at hand and, as I ran toward the edge of grass, a cement walkway – a tiny boat ramp — rose up, leading into the water.

I was mesmerized as gorgeous, huge fish leapt out of the water, one with a silver-white body, with a jagged streak (perhaps lightening?) running its length.

There was a man with a young boy splashing in the water, delighted by the activity. Gorgeous turquoise and brilliant sapphire blue flying fish leapt out of the water, dancing in front of us. I began to shout with joy and awe — Look! Look! – and glanced back to be sure my friends could see what was happening but they must have had other business to tend.

Then the man stepped onto the far end of the ramp, looking at me, his hands held out, open and receptive. You have an amazing voice, he told me. I wondered to myself, What does he mean, you have an amazing voice, for I have often been uncertain about the tenor and power of my voice. I didn’t ask the question aloud but the man seemed to have heard it anyhow.

Do you see what has happened, he asked. My son heard your voice – the power and joy of it – and suddenly he wanted to be with his mother. And suddenly I was aware of a woman also in the water and of the young boy who had climbed into her arms. I felt a mix of intense longing and delight. They shared the joy of being together in this amazing place of wonder as sunlight and fish danced on the shimmering sea. They found themselves and each other and, as I took this in, I found some lost part of myself. I found a sense of strength and power that was healing for me because it was rooted and grounded in generosity and love.

Some time after this encounter, I caught up with my friends. We broke bread and shared with one another all that we could of what each of us found through our respective adventures that day.

About Mother Beth Tjoflat

Episcopal priest, urban contemplative, playwright, lover of hounds, American of Chilean-Norwegian-Moravian descent. Interests include transformational ministry with the forgotten and marginalized; church planting and congregational development; 12-step spirituality; Hispanic ministry; radical hospitality, and spending time with dear friends.
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