Thursday, December 2, 2010


I realized I have so many ideas for new blogs, yet with my first unit of CPE coming to a close and the holidays approaching, I haven't had much time to write.  For those of you not versed in the chaplaincy lingo, the CPE residency I am doing right now is divided into three units, almost like semesters.  We just got to the end of our first unit and had to write an evaluation including the Standards of Practices, etc.  The last question asked us to write a brief story or parable about our CPE experience thus far.  I enjoyed imagining and creating this parable and I figured I would share it in my blog, too.  I share it with you so that you, too, may look at your life both for its beauty and brokenness and find a metaphor that works for you.  As I wrote this story, it helped me see the bigger picture of my hospital work and the beauty of the minsitry to which I have felt called.  So here it is:

Miles the inchworm woke up one morning and realized someone had picked her up and dropped her far from her home.  She had lost sight of where exactly she was, but she remembered the last time someone picked her up and dropped her somewhere near there.  Not knowing what else to do, Miles began to crawl forward – one inch at a time.  “This will be an exhausting journey,” thought Miles, “and I’m not even sure I remember where my home is from here!”  But Miles kept crawling…inch by inch.

Soon after the start of the journey, Miles met another inchworm.  “Are you lost?” asked the inchworm.  “I am,” said Miles.  “I’m Inchie! Let’s move along together – maybe we’ll find where we’re supposed to be.”  And so the two worms crawled along side by side…inch by inch.

There were times when Miles became afraid of what lay ahead.  Luckily, she didn’t have to face it alone - she had her friend, Inchie, there with her.  Everything seemed less scary when Inchie was by her side.  The sun was up and blazing at this point and Miles was happy that she was small enough that the grass blades towered above her to give her shade.  Surely she wouldn’t overheat because of the dewed grass around her and the cold soil below her.  So in the beauty of the surrounding creation, they continued…inch by inch.

Still not knowing where they were headed, Miles and Inchie continued on their journey.  Because they were so small and the land was so big, Miles felt like they weren’t making good progress.  There was one part of the journey were Miles was simply ready to give up.  “Inchie, I don’t know where I am going and this journey is becoming pointless.  Can we just give up and find somewhere near here to call home?”  Inchie replied, “No, we must keep going.  Trust me.”  And so they continued…inch by inch.

The sun began to set and Miles was thankful for the cooler weather.  The upcoming darkness did not seem scary when she had Inchie by her side.  Up ahead in the distance, things began to look familiar for Miles.  “I remember this!  This branch, this soil…it all smells like home!  Let’s hurry up.”  Inchie stopped in his tracks and replied, “No need to hurry, just take your time.  We will get there.  Together.  For now, enjoy the journey.  Live in the present – make it so beautiful that it will be worth remembering in the future.”  And so they continued into the night.  Miles and Inchie…inch by inch.