June 12th, 2002

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Indoor/Outdoor Sunshine

This life ought to be spent by us only as a journey towards heaven.

—Jonathan Edwards


The day outside is gorgeous: sometimes I find the bright days oppressive, but I'm fairly enjoying it today. Objectively, it's been a reasonably good work day. Though my motivation hasn't been outstanding, I'm plugging along and getting things accomplished bit by bit.

Inside, it's also a bit-by-bit process. I'm feeling better: sometimes, like last night, I feel things that are out of proportion with reality— analytical as I am, the heart does not lend itself to cold calculation. Writing has always helped me a lot; unexpected morning coffee with taci and the prayer of good friends also lightened the load. In time, my perspective readjusts; I am learning to let my heart live while realizing that it cannot be allowed to dominate all of me (in the past, I simply locked it away). Or, perhaps better understood, my emotions are not the whole of my heart— there is something (and Someone) deeper, truer in its depths that must rule.

Not sure what I'll do with the evening. I have a full range of options for being social (Enterprise night or a show at I Spy), or not at all. Somewhere I'd like to get in some reading, and perhaps more writing.

I'm on lunch break at the Blue Willow again and happened into a Jesuit and graduating student from my SU days. Actually, one of my primary motivations for lunching here today was to see my perky waitress friend again. She is an indoor ray of sunshine. I need all I can get.
  • Current Mood
    cheerful cheerful
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Onward

But the sword cuts both ways. While our heart grows in its capacity for pleasure, it grows in its capacity to know pain. The two go hand in hand. What, then, shall we do with disappointment? We can be our own enemy, depending on how we handle the heartache that comes with desire. To want is to suffer; the word passion means to suffer. This is why many Christians are reluctant to listen to their hearts: They know that their dullness is keeping them from feeling the pain of life. Many of us have chosen simply not to want so much; it's safer that way. It's also godless. That's stoicism, not Christianity. Sanctification is an awakening, the rousing of our souls from the dead sleep of sin into the fullness of their capacity for life.

Desire often feels like an enemy, because it wakens longings that cannot be fulfilled in the moment. In the words of T. S. Eliot,
"April is the cruelest month, breeding
Lilacs out of the dead land, mixing
Memory and desire" (The Waste Land).

Spring awakens a desire for the summer that is not yet. Awakened souls are often disappointed, but our disappointment can lead us onward, actually increasing our desire and lifting it toward true romance.

—John Eldredge, The Sacred Romance