Michael Morwood is resident theologian at the Kirkridge Retreat Center in Bangor, Pa., and author of many books, such as Praying a New Story.

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What I learned at 3 a.m. in a hospital bed after surgery

Soul Seeing: Until three weeks short of my 74th birthday, I had never spent a night in a hospital. Then along came prostate cancer.

Expressions of God's astonishing universe

On Christmas Eve, I attended with Maria, my wife, the American Ballet Theatre’s presentation of “The Nutcracker” in New York. Ballet is not high on my list of entertainments, but on this occasion I was profoundly moved. What inspired me was not just the work of art, but the way I found myself present to it, taking it in, living in it. I wondered at whatever is at work in the universe, hurtling atoms billions of years ago into the life and death of countless stars, through transformation after transformation into Tchaikovsky, such astonishing music, into the beauty and grace of the dancers, and in me reflecting on how this all happens.