Thursday, July 15, 2010
I want to be the fly. I want to find that calm, peaceful center in the midst of this chaotic world. I'm not complaining about my life because life is what it is. I have two beautiful, chaotic, angst-ridden teenager daughters, an older son who's coming into his own, finally, a sweet three-year-old grandson who's learning quickly how to master the art of temper-tantrum throwing, a boss who can be somewhat intense and an old house that we're working on, little by little. I also have a kind, warm husband who works hard to provide for us and a supportive, loving family and amazing friends. So what's the big deal? The big deal is that I don't want to be swayed anymore by the chaos of life. I don't want my mood or self-worth to revolve around whether or not my daughters are happy. That in itself is exhausting, for crying out loud, they're teenagers! Their moods, desires and needs are all over the chart. I can't keep up, as well I shouldn't. They're just being who they are supposed to be. So is my temper-tantrum throwing grandson and my intense boss and my old, somewhat charming house.
The problem is simple. It's one I face from time to time as I'm sure everyone else does, and it lies in my stale spiritual life. I'm a Christian, have been for a very long time. My father has been a pastor since I was 6 years old. And sometimes, the Christian world tends to look at God, in my humble opinion, through very narrow eyes. They often tend to box God in to what they're comfortable with, a God who is like them. And while I do believe we are created in his image, the image that we conjure up is often very limited, very tame, very pragmatic. I believe God is beyond our comprehension, magnificent, untamable and beautiful beyond anything that we've ever imagined. I lose sight of that. I falter. I grow bored with the image of him that I've been taught and always struggle to see more of him. That takes discipline, something that I lack. Ask my parents.
So I have to seek Him. And seeking him for me starts with broadneing my vision of him. And the only way that I know how to do that is to read. But not the Bible, anything but the Bible. Blasphemous, I know, but true. I have read the Bible through a few times in my life, and while it is a source of inspiration, it is also the place that all of my childhood fears and questions and strange teachings reside. When I feel like this, they are all I see and I can't penetrate through that veil. So I decided to rattle the cage, to plunge the depths, to use the inquiring mind that God gave me and challenge my vision of who He is. And I'm pretty sure he's okay with that, even encourages that.
I'm starting with Eat Pray Love. So far, it's wonderful. It's stirring things inside of me that need to be stirred. It's challenging the way that I see Him and reminding me of his beauty. And of the beauty that he created, here in this world, for us to enjoy. And it's reminding me that spiritual growth has a structured, methodical, consistent path and not a chaotic, free-for-all, lackadaisical, circle. And it's reminding me of His love.
So, for the umpteenth time in my life, I'm seeking.
I really want to learn how to be that fly.