Recognizing the “signs of the times” depends on so many things - eyes that see, ears that hear, a heart open to all that’s holy in our midst.

Largely, reading the signs depends on your connections – the other people in your life, what you read and listen to, what you believe, for heaven’s sake!

So how about hanging out with God? God is never absent, always seeking you (whether or not you are seeking God). Take a moment. Open mind and heart. Listen. Learn to recognize the signs of the holy in all times.

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When some were speaking about the temple, how it was adorned with beautiful stones and gifts dedicated to God, he said, "As for these things that you see, the days will come when not one stone will be left upon another; all will be thrown down."

Luke 21:5-6

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Today's verses seem to be speaking of our times. I worry about our planet, worry about what one person can do to make a difference. One of the pervasive signs of our times is the idea that we can fix most things ourselves.

Try traveling in a foreign land without a smartphone, Internet, or navigation system. Humbling. Makes me realize how self-sufficient and even egocentric these devices can make us. "I can do it myself, thank you." Lost? Download a map. Need to solve a problem? Google it.

Then we come upon the rainbow by the sea. Or stand in silence while a syncopated flock of sandpipers flies back and forth, flashing their white bodies in the morning light. My heart sings a new song. My soul is nothing I can call or click can do. I did nothing to make it happen. Bidden or unbidden, God comes. Thanks be.

Barbara Gray

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Thank you, Lord, for the surprises. Help me always to be open to them wherever they may be. Help me to see in them your signs for our times. Amen

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Before you go, take another moment. Breathe deeply of the unconditional love, strength, compassion, and courage that God brings.

Then go to be the hands and feet of the Lord in your world – no matter how big or small. Make your life a “sign of the times,” a sign of joy and hope for each new day.

You can’t do it alone. That’s the key. But God is always there to help if you are aware and reach out for God's hand.

You’ll see the signs everywhere.

Barbara Gray

Barbara Wood Gray is a spiritual director based in Tucson, Arizona. She is married with a gaggle of children, their spouses, grandchildren and great grands.
She has long been attached at the hip to the Episcopal Church in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. Her continuing delight is in her extended family, and in feeding and watching the birds on her patio.

The Calling

Ken Medema

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