What has strengthened your #faith during these trying times? We asked — now here’s a sample of what you had to say:

One way I hold my faith is by remembering that faith and hope are what humans have always held onto to keep them alive. I am one of infinite human beings who have taken this journey into being human. Ancestors upon ancestors have said that faith is what keeps a person confidently and assuredly stepping into an unknowable and unseeable future, one breath at a time, each with its own expression, guided by the emotion and experience of the breather…

We do not know what good this pandemic will bring, but I feel from looking at past diseases that good will come. New cures and treatments will be discovered, like in the past with the polio vaccine, like penicillin and other antibiotics, like all the discoveries that have led to modern medical treatments, including the implants for my hip replacements. New economies and economic means will also come. We must hold faith when we are blinded by unfathomable circumstances. Faith is the flashlight that carries us forward into the dark place and helps us see little by little how to proceed. —Bobbi Rudin

As I reflect on these difficult times, what I find that most strengthens my faith is not what Is found on the news or the countless ways to connect through the use of technology, but the real connection of people found outside of their homes engaged in conversation whether they are sitting on their front porch or walking around the neighborhood to get some much needed fresh air and sunshine. Somehow being present on this physical earth and not being distracted by the demands of our money driven society has forced us to take a look around and appreciate what really matters. While we head into Holy Week  and continue to live each day fearless and hopeful may all of our thoughts and prayers hold those that may fall. —Kathy McMurray

I was sitting on my couch, composing a text.  My beautiful orange kitten (whose name is Nala) looked at me, then ran toward me and jumped up onto the couch with me. What was weird is just as I was typing a word of my message, a word that I honestly do not remember, but had the letter “a” in it, autocorrect deciphered it as “Nala” the second before she leapt onto the couch.  It was really surreal.  But it made me certain that there is a God and that maybe life IS but a dream. —Robin Bensinger

During this time, I reviewed the miracles of Jesus.  He healed the sick, walked on water, changed water into wine, calmed the seas and the wind, and multiplied the loaves and fishes.  No matter what your religion in life… Jesus showed us that through him, we can overcome diseases or viruses, create abundance of food from the thought of scarcity and work with Mother Nature during times of stress.  It gives me great comfort  and not accidental that He showed us those specific examples of the power of God. —Pam Pech

My dog. She never complains. Doesn’t insult-disparage-or boost herself up. She lives for a day of sunshine, but is completely content with the rain. She makes me smile, and teaches me to be better, to ALL, (except maybe squirrels ????). Honestly, she’s my bodhisattva. —Brian Willoughby

Today I saw a butterfly
her blue speckled wings
glistened in the sunlight
the magic of her metamorphosis
danced around in the winds.

She flew over the sagebrush
and landed on red sandy soil
resting awhile
opening and closing her wings
a silent rhythmic drumbeat
sending wave after wave
of the knowledge she holds
about naturally transforming
choosing to grow
and heading into the mystery
in the passionate pursuit of becoming
despite those who would say
it’s an impossible dream.

I stood with Butterfly
on the sunny hillside
until she lifted into the air to fly
with graceful ease
as if she’d always had wings
weaving her way around prickly pear cactus
and drifting among the piñon pines.

Not very long ago
she had a pillowy oblong body
with rows of tiny sticky feet
she feasted on leaves
flourishing in the beauty of being Caterpillar
all the while preparing
for the changes to come.

There came a day
when she found a sheltering place
because it was time
according to her inner knowing
and the lineage of her species
and the seasons and cycles
of the earth and the stars.

She created a sacred space
for change-making.

Her heart and her spirit
the very purpose of her existence
were beckoning
guiding her
steadying her passage
through the dissolving of what had been
and the creation of her new form
and the emergence from the chrysalis
under her own power
when everything in her
knew it was time
to warm her wings in the sun
and take flight.

Today I am following the path of the butterfly
together we can join the dance of the butterflies
passionately pursuing the becoming of all we are here to be
creating sacred space for transformation
dismantling what has been
honoring the mystery
exploring unknown terrain
knitting fibers of connection
shaping new forms
reweaving the web of life
within us, between us, and all around.

When it is time
according to our inner knowing
our ancestors and lineages
and the wisdom living in the earth and the stars
we’ll open the doorway
step through the threshold
warm our wings in the sun
and fly
into the magic of our own metamorphosis
into a beautiful, loving world
beyond our wildest dreams.

JoAnne Dodgson