The Choirs of Cicada

THE CHOIRS OF CICADA

READ:  Psalm 96

“Sing a new song to the Lord!  Sing to the Lord, all the earth!  Sing to the Lord, and bless the Lord’s name! Proclaim His salvation day after day … Let the heavens rejoice and the earth be glad!  Let the sea thunder, and all it holds!  Let the countryside exult, and all that is in it, and all the trees of the forest, may they sing for joy...” – Psalm 96:1,2,11,12

At the heart of the Benedictine approach to Christian spirituality is this continuously and consistently application of this principle: Look longer than most look and you will begin to see; listen longer than most listen and you will begin to hear.
majestic

This morning the cicadas arrived at Greyfriars’ Abbey, just now awakening from their long dormancy.  Down among the oaks, while the morning fog was still lingering a little longer, the cicadas began to sing.  First, the cicadas in one oak would sing for a minute or so; then, as if in antiphonal response, the cicadas in another oak would come to life in song.  Back and forth, back and forth, first one oak would sing, then the other.  It was as if I were listening to two choirs singing, each in their turn, from two arboreal choir lofts.  As I listened even longer, further, closer, I could hear that each tree’s song began with but one particular cicada daring to voice the first note which was, then followed quickly by a few more and then rising into a quickly multiplying throng.  For over and hour, I sat in the midst of the cicada concert and I took it to be glorious gift of God to me, one soul sitting amidst some oak trees on one particular morning.

“Sing a new song to the Lord!  Sing to the Lord, all the earth!  Sing to the Lord, and bless the Lord’s name! Proclaim His salvation day after day … Let the heavens rejoice and the earth be glad!  Let the sea thunder, and all it holds!  Let the countryside exult, and all that is in it, and all the trees of the forest, may they sing for joy...” – Psalm 96:1,2,11,12

Such confidence in the one first cicada who begins to sing.  They both know … yet they do not know … about the number of cicadas who will follow their daring song.  They only have faith that praise begets praise.

They only have faith that praise begets praise.”   That hopeful cicada decides, “I shall sing, sensing that the song within me is a song within all those about me, waiting to be awakened.”   And I then I realized … “When it comes to filling the trees with cicada song, it must always begin with the one hopeful soul who chooses to sing.

Might I bare my soul to you?

I am weary … and I sense the unrealized soul among us all is also weary … of how the air is so filled with negative cries and screams!  Complaints and criticisms, accusations and verbal assassinations, angry threats countered by angry defenses, casting blame and condemning others, all the while claiming our own selves quite righteous.  All these negative cries and screams have become so much part of us that we even find it so often our source of entertainment.  And we wonder … why the oak trees seem so hauntingly silent.  We may even feel we are drowning in a flood of negativity and hostility, and we worry, “What can little soul like mine ever hope to do to change the tide and to make the trees sing once more in joyful praise?”  And I sense you know the answer …

Like that one little cicada, we begin to sing with the song that God placed within our soul in our Creation.

My Loved Ones, join me in my valiant mission, as quixotic as it may seem, to fill the earth with joyful song.  Each day, in each encounter, in each conversation, consciously and conscientiously fill it with words of praise.  Why?  For the trees are yearning to sing!

Pax,

Brother Anthony of the Cross

(jim mcwhinnie)

— For the latest installment of the ongoing story, The Mystic Realms of Shadow Fox, just click … https://greyfriarsabbey.wordpress.com/the-mystic-reams-of-shadow-fox/  … The installments are separated by ********* with the latest being at the end (obviously).

Visit my poetry site, Willow Words, by clicking www.willowwordspoetry.wordpress.com .
Also visit my new Psalter site for a reading of the Psalms www.thepsalmsbybrotheranthony.wordpress.com

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