Turning 42

It struck me recently as I crossed my 42nd birthday that the “more” my heart desires is not for the many things I want, but for the deep that my soul needs.

There are many very good things I want, and want rightly because they are good. But I also know that these are the same things that can distract me – if I get too caught up in them – from the greater needs of my soul.

Just like any warm-blooded human being I want many things that give me pleasure. I want comfort and ease and luxury. I want beautiful things and happy company and all manner of creature comforts that make me feel – even if temporarily- cosy, protected, secure and cherished. I want freedom from conflict and tension, freedom from sickness and pain, and I want to be able to spend my energy and time in ways I like. There are many very good things I want, and want rightly because they are good. But I also know that these are the same things that can distract me – if I get too caught up in them – from the greater needs of my soul.

My soul needs me to know my finitude and helplessness so that I can embrace all of life as grace and gift – even and perhaps especially the dark moments that break me open.

My soul needs me to be able to feel hunger so that I can recognise the hunger around me. My soul needs me to feel loneliness so that I can have compassion for the lonely souls around me. My soul needs me to feel grief and loss so that I can mourn with those who mourn. My soul needs me to feel unconditioned delight so that I can show others a delight that cannot be bought or earned. My soul needs me to know pain so that I know how to be present to myself and others in pain. My soul needs me to know my finitude and helplessness so that I can embrace all of life as grace and gift – even and perhaps especially the dark moments that break me open.

I can trust God to know me, love me, and grow me as no other can. He will teach me to walk with the broken in me and in others, and He will teach me to sit with the great too.

I believe that God loves me and wants good things for me. He wants the good things I want. But He also wants for me the greater things He has created my soul to need – those things that not only satisfy my desire for well-being in a fleeting way but which opens my entire being to Beauty, Goodness and Truth in an absolute and eternal way. For that reason I can trust that God will give me everything I want and need in the time and way that is best for my ultimate good.

I can trust God to know me, love me, and grow me as no other can. He will teach me to walk with the broken in me and in others, and He will teach me to sit with the great too. And perhaps He will show me someday how to help the great walk with the broken within them and to rejoice in being little – oh what a mission that would be!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s