A Contemplative Moment with a Weed

By By Mary Hally

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During this profound moment in time as our world is shifting in rapid ways, I am finding it quite difficult to imagine what the future of humanity and our shared world is going to look like after COVID-19’s imprint has settled. Murkiness within my mind, mixed with intense feelings throughout my anxious body have been testing my trust in the unseen connections. Yearning to feel peace and comfort within my days, as well as all the concern for the future, has been making me wonder what others are feeling and how they discover the presence of God during this time.

A Contemplative Moment with a Weed

I have found that being within nature is very nurturing to my discomforts. I have been noticing more things within my outdoor environment speaking to me as a “community.” Whether it be through the community of daffodils as they stand in unity, vibrantly expressing their bright yellow reflection of hope; or even within a thin, lined crack of my home’s driveway, a discovery of a playful weed inviting me into a moment of contemplation (photograph above). This one planting communicated comforting messages to me about God’s encouragements in faith, hope, and love as I sat with it and studied its design:

  • A powerful, consistent message of inspiration is evident through the threading along that very thin line of soil to nurture and feed such an abundance in growth.
  • How the larger petals expand as they mentor outward or forward in hope as though stretching for the hidden knowing of faith in love.  Is the plant saying with great confidence, “I continue to reach for the mystery because I have been created to yearn for these hidden connections”?
  • Evidence of little buds of dainty white flowers that are sprouted within the more outer-stretched petals spoke to me as I noticed new beautiful life sprouting amongst the most vulnerable ends courageously reaching for the Mystery.
  • The ever-expanding connection that has been established within this community’s roots is endlessly fed through the support system of its branches and stems. This connection is never lost from the original source of nutrients and communicates throughout as an evolving life pattern.

After observing these weeds for a few minutes, a peaceful, playful feeling came over me as I was reminded that during these challenging times, God’s language is still steadily unveiled. I recall the wisdom shared through author, professor, feminist, and social activist, Bell Hooks, "Changing how we see images is clearly one way to change the world."  I carry within my heart a trust that as these challenging shifts continue, humanity will also continue to grow through awareness and seeing anew the ways in which God is present. As we each move forward to seek, discover, and define just what God’s language is – I wonder what messages God will steadily reveal to each of us to empower our ongoing faith, hope, and love? 

Mary Hally enjoys accompanying individuals of all ages to build an inner confidence of connecting and discovering invitations from God within their days. Her own experiences of encountering the Holy in our midst inform Mary’s gift for helping others to recognize the possibility of divine presence both in beauty and in life’s challenges. She completed the two-year Spiritual Direction Practicum at Mercy by the Sea.