April 08-B, 2023

Viaduct Fall 10/15/2008 Oil Paint Rendered
Linville Cove Viaduct, Blue Ridge Parkway, Linville Falls, North Carolina
Our work over the time that remains for work
consists of deepening/enlarging/expanding
our relationship with ourselves,
with our life
and with the world around us.

These three elements,
the world, our life, our self
form the matrix for our work/our growth/
our awakening/our awareness/our enlightenment/
our realization/our peace/our joy/etc.

The first thing is to empty ourselves
of all the assumptions that drive/inhibit
our living.

Desire/wanting cannot be allowed 
to commandeer/command/direct
our thoughts and actions.

Our normal/routine/customary 
way of doing business
is interfering with our ability
to live aligned with the life
that is our life to live.

Desire has been leading us away
from our heart's true path
from the beginning,
and it is our place to find our way
back to Eden
and pay the price of our return
which is, as you will remember, 
death by the hand of the angel with the sword
guarding the way back in.

Death is a metaphor for surrendering our 
will and our way
in the service of the "Thy"
in the phrase, "Thy will, not mine, be done."

That "Thy" is the genetic makeup of our Psyche,
our original nature
and the innate virtues/specialties
we are gifted with from conception.

We are talking to ourselves
when we say "Thy will, not mine, be done,"
and our self is ready to join us
in the partnership of selves
through what remains of the time left for living.

We hold up our end of the collaboration
with time spend in emptiness/stillness/silence
exploring our dreams
and the things that arise unbidden
with force and energy requiring our attention.

The life force that is strong within us
awakens as we grant it attention,
and will be our primary guide for choices
and decisions
as we consider whether this option/possibility
has heart for us--
that is, whether our heart is in it or not,
whether we can do it
with all our heart.

Must we do it?
How demanding/insistent is the must?
Is the must not?

We have to learn to read our heart
and the leanings of the life energy,
the resonance, 
the tug,
the compelling urgency
that directs our steps--
and "go with the flow" of that energy,
against the current of popular ideas
regarding how life should be lived,
if need be.

"If need be" is the watchword
for the remainder of our life's journey.

We are searching for,
and enlisted in the service of,
what needs to be done,
what needs us to do it,
and as we wonder about these things,
and listen to our nighttime dreams,
and daytime fantasies,
the rule of thumb is:

Ask all the questions that beg to be asked--
particularly the ones raised by the ones
we start with.
Say (if only to ourselves) all of the things
that cry out to be said.

We follow the questions and statements
down the trail they blaze,
not knowing where we are going
beyond exploring, exploring, exploring,
allowing the way to open before us
as we start walking,
and doing what needs to be done
in each situation as it arises,
letting one thing lead to another
all the way.


Published by jimwdollar

I'm retired, and still finding my way--but now, I don't have to pretend that I know what I'm doing. I retired after 40.5 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church USA, serving churches in Louisiana, Mississippi and North Carolina. I graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, in Austin, Texas, and Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. My wife, Judy, and I have three daughters and five granddaughters within about twenty minutes from where we live--and are enjoying our retirement as much as we have ever enjoyed anything.

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