I know it's a Neil Young song, but that's not what this is about. Well, not really.
I'm not sure exactly what got me started thinking about it. Maybe it was a week ago when the speaker at church made the comment, "If we define ourselves as anything less than a child of God, then we have a problem."
Then the other day, while listening to my meditation CD, it crept into a little brighter light. There is a part in the meditation where we are supposed to picture Jesus in our mind and imagine him holding his arms out to us and calling us to him. Then we're to imagine him holding us. If I can be a bit vulnerable here.... I really like that part. Of all the lame-brained, stupid, shameful things I've done, to imagine Jesus still lovingly calling me to him and embracing me..... I'm not much of a hugger, but that one thought is probably my favorite part of the meditation. It's one of the main reasons I keep coming back to this particular recording. It fuels my soul and can lift me like little else.
I think it's hard for adults to put ourselves in that position of need, vulnerability, innocence. I know it's hard for me. I've often thought it must be really lonely to be one of those big muscular super-tough looking guys. I mean, I bet they have the same thoughts as most people when they put their head on their pillow alone at night. I dunno. Maybe they don't. Maybe no one does but me.At any rate, the thought of Jesus accepting me, being there for me, loving me in spite of all I am.... That's some good news.
One of the more memorable times for me working as a "parish priest" was sitting in a nursing home with a gentleman who was in his 70's or 80's. He had just been admitted to the memory department, quite against his will, and he felt totally alone and hopeless. I hated going to visit him because it's such a sad place, but on one particular occasion he put his head on my chest and wept. He had become like a child and was beyond trying to keep up appearances. I will forever remember that afternoon. It brings a tear to my eye still today. Now I miss those times.
Sometimes I wonder who we think we're kidding; who I think I'M kidding. Who are we trying to be?
"Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God—" (John 1:12)
When I think of that I think of innocence, purity, honesty, hopefulness, and a sense of awe and wonder. And that is my prayer for today.
Peace out, my friends; and in.