Friday, 06 July 2012
I often wonder what life would be like if I were more stable in my efforts to follow the path and faith I profess. I always hit ‘chaos land’ after a plateau of peace. I come to an intersection with five points and it seems that my energy takes off into all of them at the same time. I can’t seem to focus, am restless, can’t sit for any length of time, and seek some entertainment to offset the inner maelstrom. Things do settle of course. Perhaps one of the good things about aging is that I can get a better idea of what lies ahead because I can see so far behind. Now the cycle of chaos still hits me, but I can handle it a little bit better than when I was younger.
When in a bad spot, the illusion is that this experience, this pain and emptiness, is permanent and will only end if some kind of escape is looked for, or planned. Of course no one can escape from life or it’s up and downs. My center is becoming clearer and even in the midst of the inner storm or perhaps the flip side of that -- the inner deadness and calm that leads to lethargy, I can still experience, even if only darkly, that inner place where Christ Jesus awaits me. Perhaps I never leave that place, my wanderings just another illusion to remind me of my dependence on the grace and mercy of Jesus Christ.
I am slowly learning to trust the process of my life and the ups and downs, even my failures and sins will bring me ever deeper into the mystery of my relationship with the Father through his Son. It is all about surrender, trust and love in the end. Trust being a conscious choice, just as faith often is. Such is the gift of aging, allowing what needs to healed to come to the surface. There is much I don’t understand, yet my faith and my trust allows me to continue on my journey, with all of its stops and starts and at times wandering off the road for a while. Then, grace becomes apparent, the light beckons and I feel a healing of my inner pain and chaos.
The path for the Christian is about becoming childlike, which I believe is the highest form of maturity. It is about embracing life, its pain and joys and deep sorrows, without seeking to escape from the experience. It is about allowing the heart to expand and to not constrict into cynicism or the numbing embrace of despair. It is in trying to escape that we wound ourselves more fully, allowing the evils and injustices done to us to gain power and control over our lives -- it is called fear. I am speaking of my own struggles, my getting up and falling down, my trying to escape through actions that only slow down the growth into new life that I believe we are called to. It is about love, all else is secondary. To love ones-self, others and most of all, to love God, with ones whole mind, heart and soul and to be open to the loving response that is experienced in ways that we need and not always want.
Do you sometimes feel like there's chaos in your life that prevents you from walking down a path of faith? What are you learning as you walk down the path?