Daily Riches: Women and Their Idle Tales (Frederick Buechner)

“The Sundays after Easter are …precious be­cause, in their comparatively subdued, low-key way, they seem …closer to the reality of the resurrection as you and I are apt to experience it. These everyday Sundays without all the flowers and music and exaltation are like the kind of day that Luke describes in his account of the two disciples on their walk from Jerusalem to Emmaus some seven miles away. They had heard the women’s report about finding the tomb of Jesus empty that morning, but as Luke writes, it ‘seemed to them an idle tale, and they did not believe them.’ They did not believe the women because they found what the women said unbelievable, and then as they trudged along with the evening approaching …Jesus himself­ risen from the dead and alive again – joined them on their way, only they did not know it was Jesus because, again as Luke puts it, ‘their eyes were kept from recognizing him,’ and I think those eyes are almost the most haunting part of the whole haunting story because they remind me so much of my own eyes and because I suspect they may remind you also of yours. How extraordinary to have eyes like that – eyes that look out at this world we live in but, more often than not, see everything except what matters most. …What kept them from recognizing him, of course, was that they thought he was dead and gone, and when he asked them what they had been talking about, that is what they told him in words as full of pathos as any in the New Testament. ‘We had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel,’ they said, but by then their hope was as dead as they believed he was himself. They had gone to the tomb to see if he was alive as some believed but had found no trace of him. …they were so lost in their sad and tangled thoughts that they did not recognize him any more than you and I would probably recognize him as we walk through the world because, like theirs, our eyes are too accustomed to darkness and our faith not strong enough to believe in the reality of light even if it were to blaze up before us.” Frederick Buechner

“We had hoped that he was the one to redeem Israel.”
Luke 24:21

 Moving From the Head to the Heart

  • Are you dismissive towards women when it comes to spirituality?
  • Are you eyes too “accustomed to darkness” to notice the light?
  • Is your faith sufficient for those times when you are “lost in sad and tangled thoughts?”

Abba, give me eyes to see.

For More: Secrets in the Dark by Frederick Buechner


Daily Riches: Unutterable, Restorative Holiness (Frederick Buechner)

“In Florida, in the winter, there is a walk that I take early in the morning before breakfast most days.  …I do not know any place lovelier on the face of this planet, especially at that early hour when there is nobody else around and everything is so fresh and still. The waterway drifts by like a broad river. The ponds reflect the sky. There are wonderful birds – snow-white egrets and ibis, boat-tail grackles black as soot – and long, unbroken vistas of green grass and trees. It is a sight worth traveling a thousand miles to see, and yet there is no telling how hard I have to struggle, right there in the midst of it, actually to see it. What I do instead is think about things I have been doing and things I have to do. I think about people I love and people I do not know how to love. I think about letters to write and things around the house to get fixed and old grievances and longings and regrets. I worry and dream about the future. That is to say, I get so lost in my own thoughts – and lost is just the word for it, as lost as you can get in a strange town where you don’t know the way – that I have to struggle to see where I am, almost to be where I am. Much of the time I might as well be walking in the dark or sitting at home with my eyes closed, those eyes that keep me from recognizing what is happening around me. But then every once in a while, by grace, I recognize at least some part of it. Every once in a while I recognize that I am walking in green pastures that call out to me to lie down in them, and beside still waters where my feet lead me. …I recognize that even in the valley of the shadow of my own tangled thoughts there is something holy and unutterable seek­ing to restore my soul.” Frederick Buechner

“He leads me beside quiet waters,
he refreshes my soul.”
Psalm 23:2,3

Moving From Head to Heart

  • Do you struggle with “seeing” the beauty that surrounds you?
  • Do you have a restorative place for your soul? Do you make time to go there?
  • Are you learning to be open to the one “seeking to restore your soul?”

Abba, slow me down. Unclutter my heart. Open my eyes.

For More: Secrets in the Dark by Frederick Buechner

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These “Daily Riches” are for your encouragement as you seek God and he seeks you. I hope you’ll follow and share my blog!  –  Bill (Psalm 90:14)

“I practice daily what I believe; everything else is religious talk.”