Joyce Rupp has given the publisher Jeanne Wall permission to publish this newsletter.

August Prayer from Joyce Rupp:

I rely on you, Strength of My Heart, 
to fill the gaps of my inadequacies.
Strength for me when I limp along weakly,
Unable to activate what is best in me.
Strength to turn toward those in need
When my heart is hollow, my mind shallow.
Strength to carry me though confusion,
To bolster my faith when it declines.
Strength for the times I am tempted
to turn from what facilitates my growth.

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Newsletter:

Not long ago, I sleepily began morning prayer with Psalm 138. Right away verse 3 woke me up: “You increased the strength of my soul.” How, I wondered, could my soul need strength, and what kind of strength might that be?  After setting aside the query without any answers, I prepared further for meditation with a prayer in Sounds of the Eternal.  Lo, there it was again, that word: strength. John Phillip Newell writes, “Let us serve love with our strength this day…strength of the everlasting river, flowing in us and through us, the strength of the river of God.”  Now, when this sort of surprising connection happens, I pay attention. Was the Spirit trying to tell me something about my soul and inner strength? 

I mentally explored the meaning of the phrase “strength of my soul,” beginning with the word “strength.” To me it meant a spiritual muscle, potency of purpose, tenacious courage, power beneath weakness, bravely holding on, endurance, perseverance, willingness to stand firmly in spite of seeming defeat, fortitude amid the forces of impossibility. 

How could my soul, the core or center of essential goodness, need of this kind of strengthening? Wasn’t soul a fundamental part of a human being, unchanging and undaunted by whatever charged against it? Could soul be weak and vulnerable?  After looking at how I encounter life emotionally and mentally, I thought, “Yes, each day all sorts of things assail this pure core, trying to squeeze it into a shadowy corner of myself.” 

So my soul needs strength during daily, interior experiences especially when:

… doubt proposes that small gestures of compassion do not make a difference; hope struggles to stay alive while anger sinks its teeth into hateful political rhetoric and I want to echo the same stuff back; the pressure of work tries to persuade me to not take time to pray; I weigh the decision to step away from personal concerns and be there for someone who might benefit from a caring presence; I forget to live with daily gratitude for all sorts of interior and exterior gifts easily passed over

Now, one more surprising connection—as I prepared this August newsletter, I recalled that Fragments of Your Ancient Name contains the following prayer for this month:  

I rely on you, Strength of My Heart, 
to fill the gaps of my inadequacies.
Strength for me when I limp along weakly,
Unable to activate what is best in me.
Strength to turn toward those in need
When my heart is hollow, my mind shallow.
Strength to carry me though confusion,
To bolster my faith when it declines.
Strength for the times I am tempted
to turn from what facilitates my growth.

Abundant peace,

Joyce Rupp
© Joyce Rupp  

Upcoming Events and News
Boundless Compassion Retreats
Led by Boundless Compassion
certified facilitators.

Weekend Retreat
Sept 6 – 8, 2019
Franciscan Renewal Center
Scottsdale, Az
Ruth Baker / Colleen Shephard
Registration
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Weekend Retreat
October 25-27 
Creighton Retreat Center, Griswold, IA. 
Fri. 5:00 p.m. – Sun. noon 
“The Transforming Power of Self-Compassion"
Jeanne Johnson, Anne Kubr,
Patty Forsberg, Maureen Bausch 
Joyce Rupp will also speak at this retreat. 
Information and Registration.

Boundless Compassion Retreat
October 6-10
Sun eve - Thurs 4:00 p.m.
Siena Center, Racine WI
Mary Jo Wulf, Jeanine Kosman
Registration
Retreats led by Joyce Rupp

September 13
Day of Prayer
“Anchors for the Soul”
Christ the King Retreat Center
Buffalo, Minnesota
Contact:  
Jim Deegan, OMI
jdeegan@kingshouse.com
www.kingshouse.com
763-682-1394

September 14
Benedictine Days Series
5:30–8 p.m.
St. Scholastica Monastery
Duluth, Minnesota
Contact:
Dawn Carrillo
dcarrillo@duluthosb.org
www.retreatduluth.org
218-723-6699

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All information on events can be located on my website: 2019 and 2020 Events Schedule.

 

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