Thinking Out Loud...
It’s been raining here on and off for a few days, often in heavy sheets that seem somehow more densely liquid than other rain. For a while one day, I watched the flows of water streaking down the window pane creating miniature rivers in unpredictable courses. None flowed in a straight line, always some invisible barrier would cause them to break right or left, mingling with other streams for a while then suddenly veering off once again along a new path. This sort of phenomenon fascinates me because even in its very ordinariness it opens a portal to the mysteries of life and faith. It reminded me of these words from Steve Garnaas-Holmes (though I added the last line myself) - -
I can’t make the river come to me,
I can’t keep it from flowing away.
Just drink the water like it’s holy,
In its fluid prayer, all I need to say.
There is much about life that is far beyond my control, much like a river that I cannot bend to my will, or that rivulet of rain that does not heed linear direction, and yet even that which I cannot alter offers me a choice: either to expend myself in the pursuit of power over it, endlessly ruminating on why it will not change, or to step into the flow of this stream of life and be open to where its course may take me.
I’m not advocating that we all throw caution out the window and simply let ourselves be buffeted about willy-nilly…but sometimes, I think, we fight the current too much. We dig in and resist the path that God is inviting us to follow: a call that will take us in a new direction, a journey of reconciliation or renewal that we are afraid to undertake because we do not know where it will lead, or the act of simply allowing God to be the priority of our life and not just one of many.
So much of what we do is fighting against the inclination of our soul which desires in faith to be obedient to the Lord and which asks us to allow that river of grace, that river of love, to flow through us. Sometimes we refuse to let ourselves be moved when, in fact, if we stepped out in trust, we might find that the water is not only holy – it is soul-quenching!
Psalm 36: 7-9 How precious is your steadfast love, O God! All people may take refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house, and you give them drink from the river of your delights. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light.
May you drink deeply from the fountain of life and find yourself immersed in God’s river of delights!