While staring at my feet – which by the way were fixed in scuffed up black wing-tips – it hit me again. Maybe not as heavily as before but there was weight nonetheless.
I’m starting over.
I was sitting in a nondescript room used for training. Eighteen of us sat wrapped around a horseshoe set of mitred tables. Most were much younger than myself. And for the most part they nodded as if they understood.
The scuff marks on my well-worn shoes had my own eyes running over them again and again. Their age and wear an echo of my own. Are shoes only as old as they feel?
But then something happened.
I embraced the difficulty and confusion. I still want a peaceful soul and this seemed to be the only path heading in the direction. So I embraced feeling foolish and ignorant and weak. All of it. I owned it. No faking it.
And it felt great really. This should make sense to those who worship the God who is strong for the weak. Even if hard to breathe life into.
The temptation in every situation is to be strong. Doesn’t matter who you are or what you do. We want to be competent, be seen as able and celebrated for our ability. Being singled out as clueless in the room is to spend time in the valley of the shadow of death. And the fear of this happening may be worse.
For some reason we celebrate humility but have no room for humiliation. I’m not suggesting we should pursue it so much as make room room for it. Make space for even the things we naturally want to avoid. A woman may avoid a broken heart by never loving. I could avoid humiliation by doing something more immediately and obviously suited to my gifts.
What gets in the way of a peaceful soul and embracing the humiliation is my own desire for immediate satisfaction and significance. I’m OK with the cross as long as the crown is simultaneous.
This should sound familiar.
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