I am a shameless thief. I pillage and steal and thieve without a single shame. In the days when I used to sew and sell garments, I stole ideas from frocked toddlers whose aunties had brilliantly outfitted them. Now I fancy myself a housebound philosopher and I steal thoughts from brilliant writers and expound on them here.
This morning I came upon a post that I got so excited about that I had to walk away from it because I was trying to read it so fast that I was skipping too many parts. Kind of like stuffing your face with almond rocha at Christmas and then realizing you should have slowed down and enjoyed the process. Or like finding a vintage quilt at the thrift shop for $5.00 and just woodenly walking away because you can't bear the stimulation.
Allow me to introduce Queen Heroical:
"...It also dawned on me that this might be why the Bible needs to tells me (us) to think on whatever is good, whatever is noble, whatever is right etc etc etc ... not because doing so is easy,
............. but rather because doing so means accepting, openly accepting that there is love greater, there is love which exists in the pain of it all. Think on it – have courage oh you of little faith ... have courage, do not be afraid, think on these things. Lifting eyes up can be harder than seeing what is at our feet. Daring to trust in the ever familiar face of betrayal – daring to love when it seems impossible – daring to believe that despite it all – we are all, each one of us, loved by God. Hard. "
I've been thinking about how when we are confronted by things that frighten us, we search our minds for a way to "set things right". We search from the storehouse of all the wonderful learning we've submitted ourselves to. Surely we've read a book about "What-to-do-or-say" when confronted by this situation. Surely we heard a sermon that taught us the appropriate antidote. Surely if we choose our steps righteously, we are responsible to appropriate the correct behaviors to bring back the familiar equilibrium of yesterday.
I challenge you to instead examine your own heart.
How righteous are you feeling? How relieved that your ducks are in a row? Do you dare to lift your eyes? Do you have the courage to love authentically? Do you have the guts to tell your own truth? Ask your own questions?
From which perspective will you love others? From the honesty that we are all stumbling, all gasping, yet all impossibly, mysteriously loved by God?
The more I learn, the less I know for sure. And there's a great relief in there somewhere, because it opens my mind to the endless possibilities of God's endless, redeeming love. And that's where I choose to look and rest.