Learning to Dance

Explorations in the Spiritual Life

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Over a year ago I last wrote here. Odd thing that really. I thought I had come to the end. I didn’t, though I did indeed come to the end of my ability to interpret.

Now I write again, documenting in part, the path.

I write now because I think I’ve encountered another wall of being. When I saw a similar wall in 2003 it bounced me around through various directions — flirting with escape, collapsing in mediocrity, attempting to soar through words on a page. Those words opened a door, though not a door towards any measure of palpable success. They opened a door to my discovery I needed space in time and in location. I was drawn to my misplaced self and sought a renewed conversation that engaged my yearnings. For ten years I had followed promise only to find myself at the end of a road without any obvious way of movement onward. The promise led me to a seeming dead end.

Only it wasn’t. The path led, like a mountain stream, under ground for a while, submerging me in and through darkness and quiet and death. Not physical death, to be sure, but certainly a death of my being. The promise throughout remained that of resurrection.

Joseph in the dungeon. David in the caves.

Promises given, overthrown seemingly, but grasped according to the timing of God.

Jürgen Moltmann talks about the promise of God:

The history which is initiated and determined by promise does not consist in cyclic recurrence, but has a definite trend towards the promised and outstanding fulfillment. This irreversible direction is not determined by the urge of vague forces or by the emergence of laws of its own, but by the word of direction that points us to the free power and the faithfulness of God. It is not evolution, progress and advance that separate time into yesterday and tomorrow, but the word of promise cuts into events and divides reality into on reality which is passing and can be left behind, and another which must be expected and sought. The meaning of past and the meaning of future comes to light in the word of promise.

Israel had clear prophets and leaders who held onto the promise as it came. We have the promise of Christ coming again to deliver us from evil. Yet, what promise can we hold onto today.

This is what I wrestle with because I seek faith. I want to taste faith and live it. But where does my faith settle? I can’t be content with vague philosophical notions. No matter how much I should affirm my pleasant contentment in a nebulous forgiven state I seek palpable realities.

I stepped beyond what was left behind, choosing a reality which echoed of divine whispers. Only the meaning of the future does not now reveal itself, leaving me deaf and dumb and doubting. Not doubting God. That’s behind me. Seriously doubting my capacity to apprehend God. I don’t know where he is in my present reality.

Yet, what do I want? I want assurance. I want validation. I want settledness in at least one aspect of my existence.

That isn’t to be seen or touched or understood now. So I weep for the light of this purported word of promise.

I sought prayer at church today. In the back room where the prayer ladies gather to lay hands on the especial needy. I didn’t get that prayer because the whole time I stood waiting my mind filled with assurances already given, words handed off and prayer said. Not always abundant or common, but powerful and enlightening when they do come. I walked out.

I sought assurance and reminders of things I should, by all faith filled reasonable measure, understand to be true, but for the fact their truth has not caught up with the present reality.

When all the words have been given, the promises told, and the fractured being gutted and rebuilt, what assurance can there be? Only the assurance of a sought satisfaction.

Only to wait. And when exhausted by the wait, to wait yet more, until the time is ripe and all becomes apparent.

I worry I am looking the wrong directions. I worry because prayer bestows no enlightenment.

I should have faith. But in the chaotic quiet of nothingness and barrenness, faith is a bitter reality.

Still, I must have faith. That is all I now know.



evening 2

Fragile and Daring


burning bush


Sorry it’s been a while. Call it a time of posting blah. I honestly, seriously, considered just chucking the whole website thing. But, that would be silly, and more work then letting things lie fallow for a bit. So, now, here’s this, whatever it is.

Mental Muddle

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