Tuesday, November 29, 2011
"You know what I've always thought?" She asks in a tone of discovery, and not smiling at me but a point beyond. "I've always thought a body would have to be sick and dying before they saw the Lord. And I imagined that when He came it would be like looking at the Baptist window: pretty as colored glass with the sun pouring through, such a shine you don't know it's getting dark. And it's been a comfort: to think of that shine taking away all the spooky feeling. But I'll wager it never happens. I'll wager at the very end a body realizes the Lord has already shown Himself. That things as they are" - her hand circles in a gesture that gathers clouds and kites and grass and Queenie pawing the earth over her bone - "just what they've always seen, was seeing Him. As for me, I could leave the world with today in my eyes."
From A Christmas Memory, by Truman Capote
Saturday, November 19, 2011
I don’t know of anyone who would disagree that honesty is the best policy. If for no other reason than that it’s simply easier to be truthful. I recently heard a woman say that she always tells the truth – because she can’t keep track of what she’s said otherwise. We generally expect truthfulness from others. Trust is an important foundation in on-going relationships.
A complicating factor, though, is the inherent assumption that we’re being honest with ourselves. But are we? We are social animals and, as a result, our preferences are powerfully influenced by the people around us. Some people create personas that are easy-going and cooperative which are wonderful qualities. But is it possible that we lose something along the way?
At different stages in our lives, we make decisions. We decide where we want to live, what we want to study, what job we want to take, etc. I wonder if we lose sight of some of our passions and dreams in the process. I am not advocating not making life decisions – they are obviously necessary and with each experience, no matter how pleasant or unpleasant, we learn and, ideally, grow.
Is there a way to keep our unlived passions alive? A way to re-visit those ideas that make our hearts sing and bring smiles to our faces?
In the Gospel of Thomas, one of the Gnostic texts, Jesus said, “If you bring forth what is within you, what you bring forth will save you. If you do not bring forth what is within you, what you do not bring forth will destroy you.” I believe that we’re meant to live lives filled with joy and passion. It seems that many people get caught in the day-to-day without much consideration for anything else. It takes a certain amount of relaxed discipline or effortless effort to allow our truest selves to surface. If there is no still silence, we will never be able to sense our deepest longings.
What is your passion? What is your heart’s desire?
Be honest now.