What I Need... What I feel... What I want...
I found this quote at this blog and loved it.
"life is just overwhelming at times,
and we are all standing on a corner
with a sign in our hands needing something".
debi smith kaich jones
I don't have any cool photos of myself standing on street corners holding any signs. But I do have a journal full of notes and cards and scribbles and pleas and questions and all kinds of other stuff that wouldn't fit neatly onto any signs.
For example - "When you think of someone you miss and love, send love and light, G. And then keep moving. And while you're at it, send love and light and peace and strength and attention to yourself. Light a candle for yourself."
And, while testing a few new pens in my journal, I found myself practicing a new and more deliberate type of penmanship with a new pen I have fallen in love with (the Micron 02 tip in black, red, green, and blue). Here's what I wrote in my new handwriting: "Use what you love. Wear what you love. Eat what you love. Love what and who you love. Boldly. Fearlessly. Without apology. Just do it." Looking at it now, it's not so much handwriting as it is soulwriting.
Last week, while reading A Suitable Boy by Vikram Seth ( a 1300 page novel that will probably take me the better part of a year to get through... it's good, but I'm a very slow reader of big, thick novels. More than a little intimidated, I confess.) I came across this quote on page 321.
We are, each of us alone, thought the Nawab Sahib; blessedly, we rarely realize this.
Here's what I wrote in my journal as a response to that quote:
"Each of us is alone. Yes.
We rarely realize it. No.
I think we are fully aware of it - which is why we do so very much to avoid our loneliness. To downplay it. To smother or bury it in stuff, activities, noise, sex, attention, affection, anger, accusations of others, work, busyness. We need to let the loneliness cut deeper."
A few questions keep popping up on these colorful journal pages of mine. Questions like: What am I hungry and thirsty for? What do I need to stop indulging in? What have I been chasing? What's chasing me? Is it possible to stop all the chasing, the fantasizing, the grasping and pulling and attempts at manipulation and work harder at quenching my own thirst? At allowing my thirst to be quenched without so much work on my part? Is that possible? Am I willing to take the risk and let go?
My dear friend, Katie Crowe, preached about this very subject of hunger and thirst a couple of Wednesdays ago. And because she loves me so much and knows how much I love to print stuff out and glue it into my journal, she sent me her sermon in written form. Here is part of a Henri Nouwen quote that she included in her sermon: "I think you understand what I am talking about. Aren't you, like me, hoping that some person, thing, or event will come along to give you that final feeling of inner well-being you desire? [Yup, I sure am hoping that.] as long as you are waiting for that mysterious moment you will go on running helter-skelter, always anxious and restless, always lustful and angry, never fully satisfied [Yup, that's me too. Always seeking, always hoping, and so often being disappointed.] ...We are the beloved. We are intimately loved long before our parents, teachers, spouses, children, and friends loved or wounded us. That's the truth of our lives. That's the truth spoken by the voice that says, 'You are my Beloved. You are mine and I am yours. I look at you with infinite tenderness and care for you with a care more intimate than that of a mother for her child. Wherever you go, I go with you and wherever you rest, I keep watch. I will not hide my face from you. You belong to me. Nothing will ever separate us. We are one.'"
My journal bulges with responses to that quote as well as a few other parts that of her sermon that I didn't include here.
Dig deeper, Gail.
Drink deeply from The Wellspring of Life.
Listen with greater inner attentiveness to His Voice.
Step out of the stream of my fears and insecurities,
conscious and unconscious motivations,
and tap into The Source of security and peace.
Go to the place where I am deeply loved,
deeply longed for
and tenderly held.
Where I am the beloved, the chosen one.
Where I am the feast.
Live in and from a deeper and thicker place in your heart and soul."
Nope, no clever photos of me holding up well-crafted holding signs. Rather, I find myself gently and tenderly holding up my battered, bruised, and remarkably resilient soul for closer inspection and introspection.
The questions and doubts and hopes and yearnings and dreams keep coming up in me and for me. I am beginning to think they are never going to stop. (Well, duh, Gail!)
I am also getting increasingly clear on what I need, what I feel, and what I want. (It's about time, Gail.)
And, most life-affirming of all, I find myself falling more deeply in love with this soul of mine. (Yay, Gail.)