I Come to the River a Year Later

I come to the river this afternoon, on the anniversary of my coming here for the first time - with so many memories of experiences and lessons learned - but especially recalling that day, a year ago - spent with the one who first brought me here, suggesting it as a meeting place...

I come to the river in the afternoon after spending the late morning with a gifted therapist and healer who reminded me that the things that happen to us are not good or bad in the mind of God - even though we may label our own experiences as good or bad. We must learn to see ourselves as God sees us - in all our beauty and magnificence, and know that everything has a purpose in God's infinite plan...

I go deep into meditation and hear the message: "I am with you always, until the end of time..."

I come to the river after over a week of not being able to immerse myself and Grace in its healing waters...

I come to the river after two nights of dreaming of being in water...

In one dream, I have to swim across to the other shore to receive a spiritual teaching, from one of my teachers...

In the second, I must confront my fears and launch myself onto the ocean on what seems to be a thin plank, with no visibility of land in the direction I am going...

I come into the river in the early afternoon and paddle straight across to the Maryland side which longingly drew me for so many months. The water table is low again, and I can see very strange things growing on the riverbed that I find to be very ominous looking. The grasses I encounter are very thick and I confront my fears of getting tangled in them. I no longer want to be held back by remaining ties to the past and want to let go of replaying events and circumstances in my head...

The other side no longer holds an interest for me - and I paddle today, without aim and without reason - there is no plan and no goal that I have...

I discover a pipeline buried underneath the water, seemingly connecting the two states I am straddling. I follow it for a while and think of making my own life a straight highway for God - as the Prophet Isaiah once foretold and extolled...

I recall so many lessons that I have learned on this river over the course of this year:

"In the river I know I will find the key."

"Let go of holding on,
and hold on to letting go..."

"Trust that this river is taking you
to the ocean of the unimaginable..."

"At last, the river of my life
flows into the ocean of Thy Live."

"Creo que oigo una voz,
al otro lado del rio...
tanta lagrima
y yo soy un vaso vacio..."

"Spirit of the river,
I can hear you...
I am deep inside your song..."

"We are many drops, one ocean..."

"I will remain by this river...
May my present path, my new life,
start from there...
The river has taught me to listen...
The river has many voices...
The river is everywhere at the same time...
And when I learned that,
I reviewed my life,
and it was also a river..."

"A river called The Arms of God..."

"The river speaks...
I will be with you until the end of time..."

"You are in some kinds of race with time,
with unbelievably harsh circumstances.
You must paddle with the questions
that will most help you awaken
into the next phase of your life...
You have left the shore of what you think you know
about yourself, your life, your relationships,
your direction, your purpose.
You must ask God more deeply than you ever had:
'Who do you say that I am?
What do you want me to do?'"

"The ocean of Spirit has become
the little bubble of my soul..."

"Let this river run..."

"This river runs through me..."

"Come sit in my heart.
My heart is deeper and wider
and fuller than this river..."

"There was a great darkness I had to pass through
upon my return from the lake. I had so totally left my life
that I did not know how to find my way back in..."

"The river speaks its wisdom:
'Your love must be stronger than your pain..."

"The river is wide, I cannot see.
Nor do I have light wings to fly.
Build me a boat that can carry two,
and both shall row, my love and I..."

"Surrender is the river
that will deliver you back
to the ocean of cosmic consciousness."

"The water is your friend,
you don't have to fight with the water.
Just share the same spirit as water,
and it will help you move."

"Don't push the river,
let it flow."

"I paddle into the thick mist.
If this is not surrender, I don't know what is."

"Cross the river bravely,
conquer all your passions..."

"Let us bless the grace of water...
Let us bless the humility of water...
Water: voice of grief, cry of love
in the flowing tear.
Water: vehicle and idiom
of all the inner voyaging that keeps us alive."

I come to the river but do not spent a lot of time here today. I don't know how often I will be able to immerse myself in its healing waters. I recall a student asking me recently, what would I do when I could no longer paddle as winter settled in for a stretch? I know I will still come here, even when it is biting cold. How could I not?

I come to the river today - more to mark an anniversary and to give thanks for all that I have been given and all that I have received at every stage of my journey and relationship to this river...

I come to the river with a grateful heart, and -

I thank the One,
and the one -
who brought me to this river.

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