Life and Time, the Greatest of All Gifts • Love, the Most Turbulent of All Sacraments
I speak for myself, only. I do not drag anyone else into my thoughts. I share with you as a common, ordinary participant in life, and time, and love, and as an amazed witness.
In the beginning, God’s first gift to each of us arose in the mind of the Creator, Himself.
To be born, to be alive, to share in this splendid experience we call “Life” — is to be chosen — personally, by name, by the Maker of All Things, to share in the majesty of His creation.
The major factors of life — when and where we are born, and who will be our family — are not of our own choosing, but this is where the journey begins.
Freedom of choice fills in the rest of the story.
Each of us is chosen to fulfill many special purposes in this world, known very well to the Maker, actually chosen by the Maker, specifically for each us.
In the unfolding tapestry of time, we are meant to know our purpose. Pieces of the story are revealed to us each day, for good or ill, by everyone we touch, by everyone who touches us.
In a wonderful book of the Old Testament . . . the Lord spoke to Job out of the storm, “Brace yourself . . . I will question you, and you shall answer me.” Oh yes, soon enough, the Maker of All Things will question each of us about how we chose to live our lives.
Life and love are the most turbulent of sacraments, unlooked for blessings given to each of us by the Maker of All Things.
The gift of life is the first blessing, the exact moment when our individual stories begin.
But it is the gift of shared love that is the greatest of all blessings, the ultimate generosity of the Maker, Himself.
In the first few words of Genesis . . . in the beginning . . . darkness was over the surface of the deep . . . and God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light.
All creatures, great and small, are children of darkness and of light. Darkness and light are brother and sister. From the moment of our conception, we are on our own individual journey from darkness into light.
From the first moment of our beginning, we are children of darkness. Our bodies, our faces, our fingers, our toes, our minds, our hearts are formed within the loving, protective, nurturing, warm darkness of our mother’s womb.
We float safely within the water of life, the living fluid of the amniotic sac, that holds us safely within the warm darkness of our mother’s body.
At birth, we come out of darkness into light. The moment of our birth is our first journey. From that moment, for the rest of our life, our thoughts live within the darkness of our body.
It is dark within the human head. It is dark within the human brain. Every human thought is a spark of light, an insight of imagination, an inspiration of creativity, born of darkness.
Each brilliant spark within the darkness is the light of creative thought, the brilliant miracle of every idea. Our human thoughts are the sparks of light from within our inner darkness where all our thoughts are born.
All our creativity awakens where light emerges from darkness. All human thought chooses to be a blessing, or not, with every spark of every thought.
The wonders of the world, seeing, hearing, tasting, touching, feeling, laughing, loving, being loved are sparks from within the darkness of our brain . . . all the wonders of life, begin as sparks of light within darkness.
The purposeful choice to thank the Maker of Life by returning to the Maker the gift of our living with honor is a choice conceived in darkness. Every day, we choose to live honorably, or not.
By grace, we all have just enough sense to make honorable choices, or not, from among many alternatives we face each day.
The human spirit thrives or withers with every human interaction, for good or ill, with the accumulated memory of human experience. The nurturing of excited anticipation or the incremental erosion of hope is an ongoing process.
God is love. The Maker of All Things is love.
Love is the author of life. Love is vital to human life. Love gently draws each of us back home, back to the Maker, back to our beginning. The absence of love leaves us free to wander in all kinds of other random directions, sometimes in every direction at once.
Hell is separation from love. Hell is separation from the abode of light. Hell is separation from the Maker of All Things.
The Maker has gifted humans with free will. We humans are born free. Each of us, one by one, with every interaction, each day, makes loving choices, or not.
As we grow, we learn each day what is love, and what is not. We decide to choose life and love, or we do not. We choose to honor the Maker, or ignore the Maker, or dishonor the Maker. We are free to choose.
When love awakens and gathers within, we move closer to the Maker who made us, we begin to return home. When we learn to love, and let ourselves be loved, we are returning home.
The world in which we live is round. Each day and each year is a journey with a familiar circular rhythm.
Each new day begins in darkness, brightens with dawn, shines with brilliant daylight, dims with the setting sun, and returns to darkness, to begin the dance of life all over again.
At the beginning of each year, we come out of the cold darkness of winter into the warming light of spring. Light heats up in summer, and cools again in autumn.
At the end of each year, another great circle closes, and a new great circle begins.
Nothing is impossible. Life really does live in the darkest depths of the deepest ocean, but abundant, abounding life lives in the light. Light is the generous source of life.
When love awakens in our life, it is the breaking of dawn. Love banishes fear and awkwardness. Love inspires courage. Love is less mindful of self, and more mindful of others.
Love encourages acceptance of self. Love inspires the desire to do what is best for those we love. Love thinks less of self, and more of others.
Love is welcoming. Love is the mutual sharing of time and attention. Love is eager to share its time with those who are loved.
Rejecting, pushing away, denying another is not love. It is evidence to the one rejected, to the one pushed away, to the one denied, that what was thought to be love, evidently is not.
When love is damaged, a dispirited response is often to withdraw, to recover, to heal alone, in the passage of time.
When love dies, the silencing, the distancing, the realization of rejection is the beginning of exile.
When love dies, calculating, self serving resignation begins the momentum of breaking away. A great circle closes, click.
The potential for a new circle to begin is hesitant, uncertain, doubtful. Failed love dies hard. Real love is never meant to fail. What was thought to be love, evidently was not.
At the end of love, we have choices.
I choose to stop the damage. I choose to have eyes that see the best in others. I choose to calm my heart to forgive the hurt. I choose to refresh my spirit to forget the bad.
I choose to be gentle, to restore faith in myself. I choose to gather strength to keep going, to never give up. I choose to become a soul at peace.
I choose to remember that God is still the Maker of All Things, and He is love. I choose to be grateful for life, and time, and love. I choose to be patient. I choose to allow healing to begin.
Of course, all of this is difficult. I am imperfect. I am fragile. That’s life. That’s love. I am always in some difficulty. But for now . . .
Thank You, Lord, For Each New Day
Thank You for life and time, family and friends,
moments to share, days to remember.
Thank You for holding us safely in Your arms,
close to Your heart.
Thank You for wisdom to manage difficult decisions
Thank You for grace to understand Your love,
especially when trust is damaged.
Thank You for bringing us home,
at our last heartbeat, at our last breath,
on that very last day.
In Jesus’ name, amen.