Outstretched Wings of the Spirit--Day Fourteen

The Fourteenth Day                 
(Tuesday, March 19, 2019)

Spontaneity—Emotional Verve—Effectiveness—Artistry

“Religious life is meaningful. The interconnectedness and mutual support between all the acts and situations of living which genuine religion fosters (make all life more meaningful). Routine and instrumental acts escape being drudgery because of their symbolic meanings. Behavior is thus more marked by spontaneity, emotional verve, effectiveness and artistry.

“Religion develops enthusiasm, zeal, courage, morale. It tends to sustain a relatively steady emotional tone which minimizes moodiness. . . And absorbing challenge to action comes from the observing of the needs for devoted service. There are occasions when the magnificence and wonder and preciousness of The Highest seem to flood upon the worshippers and stir them to mightier endeavor.

“The crusading spirit enters into religious behavior at the point where the sense of mission grows strong within the individual.” (Wieman & Wieman)

As a person grows secure in an understanding of, and feeling for, his or her relationship with the vast, quiet upthrust of growing mutuality in the universe, he or she becomes transfused with it and transformed by it. It becomes “second nature,” and one feels him or herself born again. Then come the sense of glory. (Donald Szantho Harrington)


Mighty God, grasp us with your Glory, transform us by Your goodness, touch every moment and every aspect of our lives with Your light and love. Amen.


Praise to God and thanks we bring,
Hearts, bow down, and voices, sing!
Praises to the Glorious One,
All the year of wonder done!
Praise God for the budding green,
April’s resurrection scene;
Praise God for the shining hours,
Starring all the land with flow’rs!

Praise God for the summer rain,
Feeding day and night the grain;
Praise God for the tiny seed,
Holding all this world shall need;
Praise God for the garden root,
Meadow grass and orchard fruit;
Praise for hills and valleys broad,
Each the table of our God!

Praise God now for snowy rest,
Falling soft on nature’s breast; 
Praise for happy dreams of birth,
Brooding in the quiet earth!
For this year of wonder done,
Praise to the All-Glorious One!
Hearts, bow down, and voices sing,
Praise, and love, and thanks we bring.

—William Channing Gannett (Hymns of the Spirit, no. 140)
(Hymns for the Celebration of Life, no. 308)

Donald Szantho Harrington wrote the Lenten meditation manual Outstretched Wings of the Spirit: On Being Intelligently and Devotedly Religious based on the theology of Henry Nelson Wieman and Regina Westcott Wieman. It was published by the Unitarian Universalist Association in 1980.