Calm Surrender

Calmly surrendered to serve our Lord…

Magic awes the spirit to be calm, and Rae Whitney has this quality, perhaps a real touch of the divine.

She has a direct line to the heavenly Father above, inspired by the Book of Common Prayer, by the King James Bible, and the outreach instilled by God as a mission for an inner circle of the faithful who sing praises in hymns.

Her faith is noble.

Rae has delivered her gifts in teaching by listening with an open mind always willing to extend a word of understanding.

I remember the first and last time I saw her and we conversed an hour ago.  I called to respectfully forewarn her before sending this out into the Universe.  She merely said it is good to have this outlet, and invited me to another blog by a remarkable, spiritual friend.  Her website is Aprilfiet, and it must be worthy of attention, or Rae would not have mentioned it.

Well, the calm risen in having met Rae Whitney was imbedded in my heart with the ultimate gift anyone can ever give or receive, time.  Those hours in minutes with seconds by days, months, and years counted by God’s precision, lifted me time and time again.  She said we recognized the friendship in each other; it is an honor to behold from her like an Oscar made of stars.  Her light hearted optimism crosses her lips with a smile.

“Auntie Rae” reading to our youngest moons ago, Darrin… the gentlest giant…

Let me add this quirky thought.  “To know her, is to love her.”  I can hear the irrevocable “I knows” from friends who know her …  It rolls off my tongue so trite yet I mean it as much as God must mean it.  The long ago song charms the memory of her visage; the youthfulness she keeps with the ease of laughter like a child with a bowl of chocolate pudding, calls for yet another visit, someday, somehow, God willing.  The phone visit was uplifting though being an earthling, she has a cough.  The colds that keep us counting the days ’till summer tip toe us into spring.

To top the accolades for my dear friend’s character, I will use yet another simile; she has a talent like the swirl of a delicious torte often served in the company of saints, theologians, and regular believers like you and me.  The humbly hushed truth kept through years of work for the Lord , is that Rae owns the pen that writes the hymns sung in churches of even other Protestant denominations, and I suspect in the heavenly realms.  She has taught Bible Studies at the Presbyterian Church for twenty years…but just on Thursdays because on Sundays at nine o’clock, she is in the library named after her at St. Francis’Episcopalian Church in Scottsbluff, Nebraska, to continue with another class.  Her blithe spirit yearns to bring and keep the sheep as the shepherds do in valleys afar.

How many hymns has she written?  I am not a good guesser yet if one were to ask a thousand?  I could not be sure because words are the sand in the beach of her life’s creations in sonnets, poems, and hymns to be shared among people who search her out to learn, and usually over a proper cup of freshly brewed tea.

To step into her home at the Residency is to be at the altar of pure thoughts where seasonal confessionals happen to rise in prayers steeped in a quiet deep unwavering compassionate love.  Each encounter yielding to verses in scripture coupled with a joyful rhythm.

The memory of the aroma of something freshly baked bathes the rooms and the purposely organized books, folders, journals, and spiral notebooks, still welcome in me, a pause.

The surrounding solace of minds intertwined in chorus give a sense of a solidly structured security.

I remember a group of ladies sitting in a circle, all friends like family in pursuit of strength.  I remember thinking the meeting held hands on the Bible all in the open air with no secrets, just “life stuff “ to hold as historical artifacts intended to be guideposts for wandering souls.  The value of those two hours holds a candle in every soul.  Each word savored by us like birds at the bird feeder, I noticed how we looked to peck for wisdom served

Our Maui jaunt…in between lives with a staff to guide me…

The nourishing brings us all full circle.

The small piano preserves the keys to compose and set to music the gift of her every word.  I don’t have to be there to know it.  I know Rae calmly prepares celebrations for one on one moments with the folk.  She has a way of leading in fun resolutions to keep us safely aboard.  Though she has solemnly looked out the window a time or two to say she wished she had children, I know she bore the life of service sincerely for others, may, many others.  She is wholly present to be connected in conversation.

With her royal British accent, even in song when I first heard her voice in church, the lure is to nudge one’s spine to be straightened.  Yet, once in her parlor, she invites one to put the legs up for comfort.  Oh, the foot resting atop a stool!  Her direction veils the real affection.  She cares deeply.  The calm surrender reflects a soul united with our Lord, just as Rae is.

I repeat, the nourishing brings us all full circle. 

Two panels of the painted kitchen cabinets project presented in the Come, Become Alphabetically Savvy blog.

With her written permission a long time ago, I chose one of my favorite hymns to share publicly someday as I am now from one of her hymn books WITH JOY OUR SPIRITS SING, the Hymns of RAE E. Whitney, probably distributed by Selah PublishingCo.  I painted a stanza on a panel of the kitchen cabinet mentioned in the prior blog, Being Brave.  Her inspirational words were also read on a wall in a school in Haiku, Hawaii.  Its ageless message is as big as her heart.

“Make Wide the Circle”


Make wide the circle

and let the children in!

In ever-widening circles

let love and peace begin

 Make wide the circle

                                                 and let the old folks in…

Make wide the circle

                                                 and let the neighbors in…

Make wide the circle

                                                 and let the city in…

Make wide the circle 

                                                 and let the nation in…

Rev. Clyde E. Whitney was her friend, priest, and husband…1901-1992


Make wide the circle

                                                  and let all cultures in…

Make wide the circle

                                                   and let all races in…

Make wide the circle 

                                                   and let the whole world in…

_Rae E. Whitney


Okay, for now this will suffice…the calm assignment is done… yet for me…my friend’s

magical wand continues to spark comfort in my heart…

Tomorrow…as the challenge before you, let us move on to the letter D…  All aboard?

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