(stand and face each direction)

East: Light
We give thanks not only for the sun’s light that guides our physical path in finding our way. We remember the inner light, the countless times a glimmer of light-filled hope has been returned to us through the people we know, the insights we’ve gleaned, the prose and poetry we’ve read, music we’ve listened to, our personal experiences with nature, and much more.
Let us pause and give thanks for light.

South: Warmth
This direction reminds us of what brings about fruitfulness and a sense of comfort; we recall what others have offered to us during this year, how their kindness, kinship, and compassionate understanding warmed our hearts and assured us that we are supported and loved. We remember, too, how our generosity of spirit has warmed others in their stumbling situations.
Let us pause and give thanks for the warmth of love.

West: Endings
In this direction of the setting sun and the ending of day’s light, we pause to reflect on the transitions of this year, to acknowledge that not all endings lead to pain and heartache. Physical pain lessens momentarily or permanently; personal heartache softens and sadness about the world’s situation eases due to those promoting justice; a momentary ending of drought arrives with a drenching rain soaking into the land and filling dry waterways; love grows stronger after a quarrel ceases.
Let us pause and give thanks for positive endings.

North: Resilience
In this direction where darkness and frozen land preside over a portion of the year, we look into our lives and see that we carry the ancestral gifts of courage and endurance in our psyches and in our bones; we’ve come through the year’s challenges and difficult situations and remained alive and peaceful; we value and trust our inner strength that allows us to bear the burdens that came our way. We are able to keep our wavering hope from being frozen.
Let us pause and give thanks for our inner resilience.

Within: Beauty
As we deliberately look toward our interior being, we recognize the beauty of our souls, the seeds of goodness and love that have matured in us, the opportunities that we’ve engaged in so we can share this beauty and love with others. We rejoice in our faithfulness to our spiritual transformation process.
Let us pause and give thanks for the beauty of our clearest, truest self.

© Joyce Rupp


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