What a year it has been. I cannot ever remember being more delighted to see the end of a year. 2017 was filled with crises -- not just for me and my family, but for so many others. My heart has been broken open as I have been overwhelmed with both personal and communal suffering. The floods that hit our community are both real and metaphorical for me -- the floodwaters have put my soul "under water."
Surveying the Damage
As the floodwaters recede, I contemplate the damage done. On the physical level, we see so many still trying to get their homes and businesses rebuilt. The emotional damage is equally heart-rending.
When I look at the damage done to my own psyche, I am aware of how much that has been swept away in the crises of this past year was egocentric. Like most humans, I had carefully constructed a set of defenses that protected me from feeling my vulnerability. Now that those defenses are gone, I am forced to come to grips with a soul laid bare. I am mad about this exposure, but am beginning to experience some new birth in the broken spaces.
Discovering the Hunger
What I have discovered underneath the ruins of my failed ego is a new and deeper spiritual hunger. Jesus taught us that "Blessed are those that hunger and thirst for righteousness." The word righteousness, when broken down etymologically, means "right wiseness." It is a relationship word. It means the right relational dimensions. Oh, how I hunger for righteousness, for a restructuring of our personal and communal structures to support the well-being of humankind and reconnection with God. Will you join me this new year in cultivating such a hunger?
What has been difficult about 2017? What was joyful and fulfilling?
What are your hopes for the new year?
What are you hungry for?