We met in a one-horse town on a Sunday afternoon at The Bailey Café: the quintessence of charm and hospitality, walls graced with over a thousand teapots. More teapots than you can imagine in one place. A fairy tale ambiance. A hidden treasure.
An afternoon well-spent in good company. With friends I knew well and friends I’d yet to meet. But no strangers, only birds of a feather clinging to the Vine. You know what they say about time flying when you’re having a good time – and I can safely assume that a good time was had by all that afternoon in the company of Wayne Jacobson.
I haven’t seen him since that day at The Bailey Café – which has since closed its doors – but lately I’ve enjoyed Wayne’s company again like a daily tea while reading his latest:
Lived loved, free, full: a collection of 365 daily reflections designed to draw the reader into a deeper place of quiet rest. Yes, that rest that some of us have struggled to attain by the sweat of our brow. Well, maybe not you.
But from my understanding most of us have aspired to abide in the Vine 24:7. Desired the tenacity of Brother Lawrence. The steadfast will to remain in God’s presence all the livelong day and engage in seamless conversation amid pots and pans. Amid the hustle and bustle of life and mundane chores alike.
But what happens when life interrupts that sweet communion? When you’re pushed and pulled every which way to meet the world’s demands? How centered are you then? Disconnect happens even to the best of contemplative hearts.
But instead of enduring the drone of guilt… there I go again, a lapse of conscious effort… slack me.. can’t even tarry with Jesus one solid hour... Wayne offers a suggestion he calls “The Pause that Transforms.” A no-sweat stance. A cooperative effort instead of it’s all on me. My burden. A brief excerpt from the book:
“Look to him early and often throughout your day. As you start your car…before you pick up the phone… pause and see if he has anything to show you…and you’ll begin to see things that are easy to miss….”
The gospel according to Wayne is that simple. His latest work, Lived loved, free, full offers practical steps to lighten the load of guilt that many have unnecessarily shouldered.
Every daily reflection is woven with one common thread: grace – the necessary ingredient for even the strictest ascetic’s self-denial. In Wayne’s vernacular, grace means God’s ability to do in us that which we cannot do entirely on our own. Desire + grace = transformation.