Honest Energy to Spend

In the aftermath of an intense election with increasing anxiety, I am a Christian who commits to intentionally looking for relationships with those who are different from myself. Doing that this week gifted me with the words of Sufi poet, Rumi. We lifted up these words in our prayer of confession, saying together, “O God, we are all images of You - this love that has no form, who knows what the desert sandgrain needs, and the ocean drop, who every moment opens and closes inside our hearts. At times we resist this movement. Or we put our heads through the wooden cage bars, but our bodies cannot follow. So we say, I guess my wings do not work. Help us to remember, God of Infinite Names, that Your love does not postpone its changeover into light. Lead us on the secret ways where reason is no help. Grant us wisdom to see that though our honest words may not be pure truth, they contain an energy that we can spend. Amen.” He also said, “When the sun comes up, have you noticed, how some individual stars, by which I mean human beings, begin to brighten?” We can forget the movement we are called to, the beauty of the closing and opening of our hearts, they ways in which God beckons us to brighten. We may in fear or anxiety not want to move into that flow, and be honest about where we are in relation to that movement. Rumi said, “These words may not be pure truth, but they contain an energy that you can spend.” When we can be open and honest and vulnerable, even if we only know in part, we actually become able to access the energy we need to join in what I recently enjoyed reading about - the Trinitarian Dance. It is beautifully described by William Paul Young in his poem that invites,

“ONE alone

     is not by nature Love,

          or Laugh,

          or Sing

ONE alone

     may be Prime Mover,

          Unknowable,

          Indivisible

          All

     and if Everything is All and All is One

          One is Alone

          Self-Centered

               Not Love

               Not Laugh

               Not Sing

TWO

     Ying/Yang

     Dark/Light

     Male/Female

          contending Dualism

               Affirming Evil/Good

               And striving toward Balance

          At best Face-to-Face

               but Never Community

THREE

     Face-to-Face-to-Face

          Community

          Ambiguity

          Mystery

     Love for the Other

          And for the Other’s Love

     Within

          Other-Centered

          Self-Giving

               Loving

               Singing

               Laughter

                    A fourth is created

                         Ever-loved and loving.”

We are called to engage in the Trinitarian “dance”, to be honest, use our energy in a way that moves with the flow, is “other-centered” and “self-giving”. With the Trinity we can access tenderness for each other in spite of our own anxieties, and still being true to our priority to stand with the marginalized. And please do not think that relating to God as “dancing” is merely a sugar-coated sentimentalism. The necessary vulnerability in dancing actually requires being made of stern stuff. A lot of strength goes into grace. And so how can we dance with God through a Trinitarian understanding? We must keep going, keep expending that energy of our feelings tenderly and honestly. You will never hear me say that it is inappropriate to feel angry or afraid. Rather I ask, how do we move with those? How do we dance with those feelings? Let us together keep learning to access our own vulnerability, keep meeting where we are honestly, letting go of fear to live with generosity and be caught in the flow of this dance in which we are each invited to participate.

 

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