Saturday, November 8, 2008

Let it Be

This week I cried out to God or whomever else was listening, "I can't do this anymore. You're going to have to stop me from going and throwing up, because I can't. This is no way to live. This isn't what I want. I'm so much more than this. I need some help. Please."

A knock at the door. It was two friends of mine, coming to talk about nothing particularly important. They didn't notice my red eyes and wet face. I'm a good faker when I want to be. They left.

As I laid in bed still debating what to do next, I realized, 6 months ago I was challenging the idea that Spirit uses people and sunsets and smiles to reach me. I figured if the whole idea of a God was some huge conspiracy, then saying that God works in everyday occurances, was a great way to create him. Now I'm not so sure. I sprawled out on my bed thinking, What if Spirit does use people and I'm missing the signs? What if the signs I so desperately seek are right in front of me?

A few months ago, Ben asked me, "If God is in the small and daily things, is that good enough for you?"

I said, "I'm not sure".

I'm still deciding. But Tuesday night brought me one step closer to the idea that Spirit just might be using the day-in and day-out stuff I've been overlooking for a long, long time. Maybe I'm looking at this backwards, too hard, too deeply and I'm missing the point. Maybe Spirit is right under my nose, and I'm pretending not to smell it.

Anne Lamott says, "And I didn't understand why as usual God wouldn't give me a loud or obvious answer, through a megaphone or thunder, skywriting or stigmata. Why does God always use dreams, intuition, memory, phone calls, vogue stirrings in my heart? I would say that this really doesn't work for me at all. Except that it does."

It can't be proven indefinately, but I'm choosing to believe that Spirit used a knock on my door and a little intuition to save me from my self-defeating behaviors.

I don't want to miss out. Are my very thoughts, Spirit? Are my actions, Spirit? Are my feelings of sadness, joy, confusion, and reflection being used by Spirit to reach me?

I can't deny the "something" that I feel some days surrounding me.
I can't deny that I believe in evil, awful things at work in ther world and there must be its opposite out there somewhere, whatever it's actually called.
I can't deny that I am not willing the blood to pump through my veins or the air to flow so effortlessly through my body.
I can't deny that days, seasons, births, and deaths happen so flawlessly around me without any work on my part.

I am less in control of life now more than ever and I think it's working out well. "Let it Be" has been my latest mantra. It's a powerful song and powerful words for me.

My counselor in Colorado tells me that, if I imagine life as a stream, I tend to stand knee deep in it trying to collect, analyze, label, and figure out every single leaf that comes my way. I can hardly enjoy life at all, when I seek so strenuously to figure it out, have reasons, and make sense of it all. I'm slowly learning to just, let it be.

Let it be as the day comes headed my way like a train full of many things.
Let it be when I'm hurting.
Let it be in my joy.
Let it be when the demons threaten the very breath in my body.
Let it be on cloudy days with rain like bullets pelting me on all sides.
Let it be because Spirit leads.

In reading for a class I "stumbled" upon the following passage that continues to challenge me:
"Doubt reveals a mind that asks questions, a humble mind, one that does not presume it's own ideas to be certainties, one that checks its presumptions against the data of God's creation. Indeed, the intellectually honest words belief, faith, and hope acknowledge uncertainty. We do not believe that 3 times 3 = 9, or have faith that what we throw upward will come down, or hope that day will follow night; we know these things with psychological, if not logical certainty. To take the leap of faith is to bet one's life on a presumed truth that makes sense of the universe, that gives meaning to life, that provides hope in the face of adversity and death.

One need not await 100% certainty before risking a thoughtful leap across the chasm of uncertainty. One can choose to marry in the hope of a happy life. One can elect a career believing it will prove satisfying. One can fly across the ocean, having faith in the pilot and plane.

To know that we are prone to error does not negate our capacity to glimpse truth, nor does it rationalize living as a fence straddler. "Sometimes", said novelist Albert Camus, "life calls us to make a 100% commitment to something about which we are 51% sure."