Gathered Wisdom, Jan. 24, 2023

A weekly curated collection of essays, poetry, and reflections for your spiritual journey.  From The Wisdom Years.

If you sat down and made a timeline of the growth spurts in your life, you would likely see a distinct pattern emerge—of setbacks, consistently setting you up for breakthroughs, “failures” leading you towards opportunities, challenges leading you toward growth, feeling lost eventually toward “finding yourself.”

-Gregg Levoy, Psychology Today, November 3, 2022

Found at Well for the Journey.

Waiting for the Thaw

“It is in that place between despair and hope that we find the beauty of the thaw,” writes Virgina May Drotar. It is in the spring thaw that new life and God are most potent. The old is dying off but the new has not yet arrived. It is the season that teaches us to be patient.

Read the reflection.  

From Daily Good.

Being Part of the Symphony

We spend most of our lives as part of the entire orchestra, contributing to the music with our particular talent and instrument. But sometimes we are called on to do a solo, and then we must always keep our eyes on the conductor.

Read the reflection.

From Joanna Seibert.

Commitment to What Makes Life Worthwhile

Endurance is staying with a task that matters, regardless of how difficult it may be. But, says Joan Chittister, “The notion of endurance takes on negative overtones, when I fail to realize that it is meant to bring out the best in me, not the worst. Endurance is not misery, not martyrdom, not spiritual masochism. Endurance means that I intend to survive the worst, singing as I go.”

Read the essay.

From Benetvision and Joan Chittister.

Mosquito Bites

W.H. Auden once said that when grace enters, we must dance. But what are the little irritations that often prevent us from seeing the presence of grace – like mosquitos at a picnic?  The challenge for us is not to let the minor difficulties impair our ability to see the grace that always surrounds us.

Read the reflection.

From Fr. Ron Rolheiser.

Still Following the Epiphany Light

How do we respond when we sense God is calling us into a new relationship with Him, either by our own choice or the circumstances life has brought us? What thresholds will we need to cross, and what opportunities and challenges will we encounter along the way? How do we begin again, incorporating all that life has taught us this far?

Our online study “Following the Epiphany Light” ends this week, but the material will remain on our website. It is ideal for personal use or for small groups in your congregation.

Find the material here.

Gathered Wisdom is an offering of The Wisdom Years, a ministry devoted to the spiritual journey of the last third of our lives.

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Following the Epiphany Light starts Jan 9

The magi left all that was familiar to follow a strange star, not knowing where it would take them. Their journey’s end revealed the Christ. Or was it a beginning? How is God leading you to leave what is comfortable in order to live into some new calling?

Our Epiphany offering begins January 9 for three weeks.

Join the online conversation Jan 12, 19, and 26

4 to 5:15 pm (Central time)

Online with Zoom.

Or do the study on your own.

Each week for three weeks (on January 9, 16, and 23), we will post reading assignments, reflection prompts, and resources for “Following the Epiphany Light.” Using these materials, the Wisdom Years community will gather on Zoom as we discern together what God is calling each of us to do and be in this new year. As did the magi, we will follow the Epiphany star as we leave familiar territory for places that are unknown and require humility, letting go, and moving bravely in a new direction.

Additionally, Monday through Friday each week, we will send a daily text message, – a little Epiphany light – starting January 9.

If you want to do this study on your own, we invite you to use the materials as you wish. Or gather your own small group to meet in-person at a location of your choice.

If you want to join the Thursday afternoon online conversations please send an email to Marjorie George at or Indicate you want to join the Zoom conversation. Zoom gatherings will be January 12, 19, and 26 from 4 to 5:15 p.m. (Central time)

If you want to use the materials on your own or with your own small group, please send an email to Marjorie George at or Indicate you will be using the materials on your own. Material will be posted Jan 9, 16, and 23.

If you want to receive the daily text messages (Monday through Friday beginning January 9), please send your name and cell phone number to Marjorie George at or

You are receiving this message because you are subscribed to The Wisdom Years website. If you have already indicated your interest, you need do nothing more.

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