I spend most Sunday mornings at Quaker Meeting. Today, because of the time change (don't forget the time change!), there will be a few people who show up at Meeting just a few minutes before we are all ready to rise. These folks will arrive and wonder at the deeply "settled" feel of the room... usually at the beginning of Meeting there are just a handful of people, and there may be some rustling and stirring as folks settle into silence. But today, the members of the Church of the Unchanged Clock will sit down, and then in a few minutes will be very confused as the rest of us wind up our time together with a good morning handshake. There's one friend in particular I have in mind to call, because he's been one of those bewildered late-arrivals several times.
I don't always get to Meeting itself. These days I am just as likely to be hanging out with the little people of the nursery. Someone will want me to tell a story, someone else will want to color, and a third small someone will be thinking about snacktime as soon as he toddles through the door. The adults of the Meeting feel a little bad for me if I don't get to go to Meeting for Worship for multiple weeks in a row, and we do rotate through a number of caregivers so that everyone gets some of both.
But a wise Friend once said to me that the older she gets, the more she thinks that the which and how of your spiritual practice matters much less than the why of it. That almost any act, done consciously and with spirit-led intent, can become a spiritual practice. Another Friend half-jokingly said to me once, when I remarked on her absence from Meeting for Worship that day, that she'd been attending Meeting for Gardening.
So sometimes I attend Meeting for Worship, and sometimes I attend Meeting for Storytelling. If I keep working at it (a longterm prospect, to be sure... see also my blogfriend Patti Digh's work at not complaining), maybe someday I'll approach the feeling that I am living in the spirit of Meeting. Meeting for Living.