by Roger Mock

I had this song playing in my kitchen a couple days ago while I was making my dinner. It’s by Irish singer Luka Bloom, and it’s called Blackberry Time. The chorus goes:

Everything is possible in God’s time
But nothing is for sure
All our hurts to wade through
And still we find…
Blackberry time

We’re at the peak of “blackberry time” right now. I can walk out in the backyard and pluck a few of the tiny black caps from the unkempt wild shrubs that we’ve allowed to propagate there. Luka is singing about the incredible overflowing richness of the summer season and how it nourishes the soul, as indeed it does for me. It has the power and potency to pull us out of the difficulties of the moment – our blues, our inertia, “the hurts we wade through” – and reacquaint us with vital energy and wonder.

I took my daily meditation time this morning, sitting in the arm chair, trying to find that silence beneath thinking, and the connection to Spirit. And it just wasn’t coming; the monkey mind yammering away and swinging by its tail from the old brain stem. And then I remembered – berry picking right down the road! I abandoned breakfast plans and jumped in the car. In minutes I stood amid row upon row of black raspberry bushes bursting into juicy ripeness, right at the foot of the stately Helderbergs, drinking in the fullness of summer in all it’s upstate New York glory.

I felt a rush of gratitude to be able to partake so freely of the overflowing fecundity of the earth. And I realized anew the importance of encountering the Creator through her creation. Here was my morning’s true spiritual practice for today. And it stands as a caution to me to not rely solely on “arm-chair spirituality.” Yes, I do encounter the Divine in quiet solitude, and meditation remains an essential discipline for me. But real-time Encounter through nature and in relationship with others is just as vital a part of a healthy spiritual practice.

“Everything is possible in God’s time, but nothing is for sure.” The potency of the Possible awaits our engagement with it to bring it into our reality. So join me, if you would, in logging out of the devices and stepping away from those chores that can wait. It’s time to indulge in Blackberry Time.

Love and light,