Greece…and a Very Special Place

The Path to Faith
On Our Way Down – Photo by Mary Jamis

In an ever changing sequence of events, my mom’s recovery saga took yet another turn last week. After a few days in outpatient rehab mom was back in the hospital, tired and exhausted, and apparently in need of a good rest. At first we panicked, thinking it was a turn for the worse. Finally she woke up from snoring sleep sessions to tell us she was fine. She has a couple more hurdles to clear, but thankfully she is growing stronger every day.

When this latest challenge presented itself last week my mind and body had a few bad days. I was worrying constantly and having trouble sleeping; all the usual reactions to stress. In a moment of clarity, I remembered a special place from our trip to Greece five years ago. During that divine excursion my mom, sisters and I were privileged to witness something that still stays with me to this day.

We were all in a rental car with our native cousin Stavros. He took us for a ride up a mountainside, parking along the berm of a twisty road. I got out of the car and could only see trees, rocks and gorgeous sky. Stavros told us to follow him. My mom held onto us as we descended downward on a simple path of stones. I remember the dirt ground was littered with olive pits. I silently wondered if the birds ate lunch there.

Church in the Hillside-Photo by Cally Jamis Vennare
Church in the Hillside-
Photo by Cally Jamis Vennare

A small white washed church came into view at the bottom of the stone path. It was so beautifully unexpected, so hidden, so precious. We stood in awe while Starvros retrieved the key and opened the small wooden door.

Inside it was tiny, simple and just as special. There was a small altar with icons. We lit candles and Starvros said a prayer. We stayed awhile to bask in the glow of being in such a holy place.

Can you imagine how this memory grounds me? Perhaps it was the beauty, or maybe it was the sacred holiness of such a special place. All I know is it was a huge gift. In my mind, I can run back to that little church any time I want and light a candle for me, my mom, anyone.

I leaned on that little church last week when every last bone in my body was tired and weary. Having a special place where we can go, even if only in our mind, can sometimes make all the difference in the world.

Hear ye!
Beautiful Bell – Photo by Cally Jamis Vennare

Do you have a special memory or place that grounds you? Tell me about it!

Join me on my graceful journey.

A God Nudge

A few days ago I emailed my friend Nancy. I thought she was participating in an event I’m attending this weekend. She emailed me back…. she didn’t know a thing about it. So I called Amy (on my lunch hour) who I thought had given Nancy’s phone number to the coordinator of the event. When I spoke with Amy, she too thought Nancy had been contacted.

I said to Amy, What do I need to do? Is this my responsibility? Amy said No, it is not. She said, Text me Nancy’s number again and I’ll call the coordinator. She can take it from there. I said to Amy (after a bit of hesitation), Maybe this is a God Nudge.

A God Nudge is when you get a hint that something needs your attention. God is letting you in on something, a clue so to speak, so that you end up feeling like a sort of spiritual secret agent.

I have come to accept that if I am supposed to know about something, God will somehow see to it that I am clued in. If I worry about whether or not I have the whole story on any given situation or if I think I am missing valuable information, this is really not my concern. If I’m supposed to know, I’ll be informed. Then, I can decide how to react, without making a big fuss or blaring any horns.

One of the biggest God Nudges I’ve ever had occurred while I was in Patmos, Greece a few years ago. Patmos is a place of outstanding beauty, a Jewel of the Mediterranean and I was there.

Perfect Patmos

We were on vacation, my sisters, my mom and I for two weeks. Patmos was one of our stopovers for four days. It was perfect weather, perfect food, perfect everything. While I was there, I had an overwhelming urge to write. The feeling was so powerful, I started a journal of our trip.

When I came home I wrote a small book and had it bound with a hard cover. I called it “Patmos Memories” and I gave it to my mom for Christmas that year. She loved it. I still pick it up when I’m at her house and read it over again. It was really my writing debut of sorts.

When I think of that time in Patmos, I realize God was nudging me to write. Maybe that is why I feel so comfortable sharing my thoughts and passing stories along. I think that you and I are divine friends, destined to be together and to pass along some Grace and Love.

In the earlier case involving Nancy, I alerted someone to the issue and let it go. Hopefully, I acted as a conduit of some sort. We’ll see. Thank You God, for the nudge!

Another Pretty Patmos Picture!
Join me on my graceful journey.