singing us all
I'm using this description of grace as a launching pad once again just because it so captures what Father Son and Spirit have been up to in my life for awhile now. My mind really has been renewed when it comes to living a life of grace as opposed to living the harsh demanding life of law. My immediate emotional responses in the moment to the things that are happening to me sometimes though don't line up to this renewing of the mind that has happened. It's my heart's cry that the transformation process continues to unfold to where my immediate response to the "other" is always from a place of grace/love.
I love how Richard Rohr describes the process Father has had him in.
"On my better days, when I am "open, undefended, and immediately present," I can sometimes begin with a contemplative mind and heart. Often I can get there later and even end there, but it is usually a second gaze. The True Self seems to always be ridden and blinded by the defensive needs of the false self. It is an hour-by-hour battle, at least for me. I can see why all spiritual traditions insist on daily prayer, in fact, morning, midday, evening, and before-we-go-to-bed prayer too. Otherwise, I can assume that I am back on cruise control of small and personal self-interest, the pitiable and fragile "richard" self.
The first gaze is seldom compassionate. It is too busy weighing and feeling itself: "How will this effect me?" or "How does my self image demand that I react to this?" or "How can I get back in control of this situation?" This leads to an implosion, a self preoccupation that can not enter into communion with the other or the moment. In other words, we first feel our feelings before we can relate to the situation and emotions of the other. Only after God has taught us to live "undefended" can we immediately stand with and for the other, and for the moment. It takes a lot of practice."
Law dictates that we make people pay for their mistakes while grace/love does not take into account wrongs suffered....along with many other wonderful transforming things. But it truly is a rare thing to find people that live like they believe it. People are so used to at least attempting to force others to live in such a way and carry things that they themselves are unwilling to carry. That's the kind of life law leaves us (and others) in....always. Grace/love is radically different.
Grace is always concerned about the other's freedom and healing and it also always protects the giver. Protects that is, that which is important/valuable.
I've seen it enough with my eyes in others, felt it enough in my emotions, and been guilty of it myself enough to know the damage caused by demanding people to "measure up" to some external expectation or to "pay up" when they fail to meet it, to know all this produces is more damage and continues the nightmare.
So...I want to live my life whispering of the relentless affection of Father and letting the relentless affection of Jesus find expression in me for others...so that maybe others will hear that song whose desire is to sing us all into healing.Your fire burns me like a favorite song.
A song I should have known all along.