I started a new thing today.
I love the beginning of new adventures- the chance to allow new things to unfold.
This one involves a commitment to meet with my friend Paul on a regular basis, and spend some time doing some deliberately spiritual practices, and writing about them. The idea is that we take a few hours and walk into the wilderness, talk, think and meditate.
On a bench.
This was today’s bench, in the hills above Dunoon…
Today we used one of my favourite psalms-
1God, I’m not trying to rule the roost, I don’t want to be king of the mountain.
I haven’t meddled where I have no business
or fantasized grandiose plans.
2 I’ve kept my feet on the ground,
I’ve cultivated a quiet heart.
Like a baby content in its mother’s arms,
my soul is a baby content.
3 Wait, Israel, for God. Wait with hope.
Hope now; hope always!
Psalm 131 (The Message)
As I reflect on these ancient words, I am concious of a soul that is not content, and a heart that is unquiet.
I am puzzled too as to what things David was writing about that were ‘too great’ for him (at least in the un massaged version.) He was a king after all- but perhaps a king all too aware of his failings.
And I wonder whether I really want to stop dreaming grandiose plans- it is part of who I am. I kind of believe that our dreams should lie just beyond our grasp- just outside our comfort zones…
But in all of this, I am so aware that I need to hold on to hope.
Hope for life lived in communion with good friends.
Hope for life that is rich and deep and saturated with the things of God.
Hope for life that measures it’s meaning not by a kind of success that rots the soul.
Hope for life that is life-giving to others.
And in awareness that in this life there are no guarantees- no easy short cuts. But there are moments when what has been grey can become saturated with new colour.
Like today, on this bench…