In outer space the sun’s light is invisible,
meaningless—until it finds a place to land.

Here, first thing, the sunlight
touches the tops of trees,
then lights up the faces of the houses,
wraps its arms around the town.
It reaches between things with delight,
warms the ground,
makes little pools of color in the woods,
dresses things, changes the air.

After 93 million miles the sunlight finds things,
even an old stone wall, to make it beautiful.

No matter your state,
you are here for a place
for God’s grace to land
and not fall on empty ground.
Grieving or joyous, sick or well,
struggling or at ease,
you are where God’s grace needs to come
to be beautiful.

Let it fall into you, and give thanks.


God is a family

Dearly Beloved, Grace and Peace to you.

                          God is Love. Love is not an object but an action, a process. God is love and the loving of love, and the receiving of love. God is an unfolding relationship. So God is one, and yet must also be more than one. God is a loving parent and a begotten child and the love that proceeds from them, all three. God is community. God is a family.

The Holy Trinity live in loving attentiveness to each other but it is not a closed circle. They open out to us. You are invited to come to the table, to share in that love, to be part of God’s nature, God’s being, God’s loving. This is what it means to be part of the Body of Christ.

All people are our sisters and brothers, all living beings, all Creation: though we are many there is only One of us. Join the communion of the One Who Is Many. Come into the tender love of the Mother who births us, the Lover who desires us, and the love begotten in us. Find your being in the Holy One in whom we are One.

You are the fourth person of the Holy Trinity. Come.

Trinity meditation

Holy One,
Mysterious Love,
“I Am,”

        I wonder; I surrender.

Gentle Christ,

        I thank you; I love you.

Holy Spirit,
Divine Breathing,
Emerging love,

       I bear you; I follow you.


O Holy Trinity

                  (If you want you can sing this
                  to the Tune of Finlandia)

O Holy One, O Mystery beyond us,
we praise you, Lord, O Grace without a name.
Creator of the universe within You,
source of our life, Thou Infinite Divine,
unseen, unknown, we cannot frame or bind you,
only our wonder and our praise proclaim.

O Loving One, O Love who made the heavens,
you choose to come among us as our own,
the Living Word, in flesh revealed, Companion,
stranger and Friend, whose suff’ring is your throne.
Eternal Christ who humbly dies among us,
your tender mystery in love is known.

O Living One, O Grace who lives in our life,
we can’t contain you, but we can adore.
Spirit of Love beyond, beside, within us,
into our hearts your healing presence pour.
Many and One, O Myst’ry, Christ and Spirit,
we sing, we live your praise forevermore.


The names of God

         Go make disciples of all nations,
         baptizing them in the name of the Father,
         and of the Son,
         and of the Holy Spirit.

                  —Matthew 28.19

The Holy Trinity is not a doctrine
but a mystery, a koan,
the paradox of three persons in one,
a meditation on the names of God.
Meditate on the mystery.
Pray with the names. Let them speak.

Father, Son, Holy Spirit.

Mother, Child, Love Between.

Creator, Christ, Holy Breath.

Source of all Being, Eternal Word, Living Spirit.

Abba God, Only Begotten, Spirit of Love.

Infinite Parent, Infinite Sibling, Infinite Self.

The One Beyond, the One Beside, the One Within.

Transcendent Mystery, Healing Presence, Emergent Energy.

Source of Love, Experience of Love, Energy of Love.

Holy One, Holy Many, Holy Us.

Lord of the Universe, Jesus of Nazareth, Heart of my Soul.

Loving Silence, Gentle Word, Abiding Love.

Mystery of Being, Gift of Love, Breath of Life.

Mother, Son, Holy Spirit.

Loving One, Loving One, Loving One.



The Holy Spirit is the breathing of God,
God’s re-Spir-ation in us.

You breathe in,
and your lungs, inspired,
draw oxygen and nitrogen from the air
and those life-giving elements
become part of you,
and you breathe out.

You breathe deeply of God’s love,
and, inspirited, take God inside you,
and God’s loving presence becomes part of you.

And God breathes you out into the world,
and the world breathes you in,
and people draw God’s love from you
and it becomes part of them.

Emptied, you can once again breathe in.

Breathe deeply of God.

Breathe in.

Breathe out.


Pentecost: weather report

Weather Report
For Pentecost Sunday

blowing continually,
divine breath of which
you are a word;
mighty storm that displaces
every separate thing
until in their radiant individuality
they are all one.

original light,
consuming all Creation,
offering it up as a holy sacrifice;
flames raging across all boundaries:
expect to be forced to flee
from safe, familiar places
only to find that it is a return.

baptismal waters
inundating everything
until all is submerged in God;
flood tides of love
even at higher elevations.
Out of believers hearts
will flow rivers of living water.



Yes, there are the flames of Pentecost,
the drama, the consuming blaze,

the rushing, pushing wind, desperate
for something on its loud crusade.

But for some it is enough
to be the wick of God,

of love made known in unlearned tongues,
beyond our understanding,

to be the deep where God’s creating spirit broods,
where new things come to light and life

without our doing, or knowing how
a soul comes to know its own belovedness.

Our oneness is not within but out there,
one spirit breathing in and out through all of us,

a gathering of many nations, our strange utterance
merely the cry of recognition.

Drawn to our completion,
we follow the breath to our other selves

and love them with love that’s not our own
but all of ours, breathed into us.

The secret is beyond us, a language we won’t learn,
but still go out into the streets and speak.

                           —June 4, 2014


Conflict prayer

Holy Breath,
today I will face a conflict I don’t want to face.
I pray for your Spirit:
not the flaming power to vanquish enemies,
but the warmth to soften hearts,
the tongues of flame to speak the truth,
the light to see clearly, and to be light for others.
I breathe deeply of your life-giving wind,
the Word that creates, the song that blesses.
May your breath of life fill me and guide me,
and be my only power.
Regardless of the outcome,
be my breathing and my speaking.

Holy Breathing, hold my being from the inside.
By your grace in me
may I be steadfast and reverent,
true to myself and compassionate,
lithe and persistent, strong and gentle.
May my only goal be to love,
my only hope to witness to your faithfulness.

I breathe in your grace; I breathe out your love.
Holy Breathing: peace.


Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light


Dearly Beloved,
Grace and Peace to you.
Don’t worry about being enlightened,
about becoming perfect in any way.

Give up the heroic struggle
to become worthy.

Just notice and appreciate;
be ready with love.

Welcome all into your heart
where light falls gently.

Meet each soul, each moment,
with the Beloved’s compassion.

Be the open gate of a garden
where a lovely bird sings.

Deep Blessings,
Pastor Steve

Steve Garnaas-Holmes
Unfolding Light

To receive Unfolding Light as a daily e-mail,
write to me at unfoldinglight8(at)

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