Dearly Beloved, Grace and Peace to you. Too much awe strips off our skin, too bright a glory terrifies.
Too deep a wonder churns our guts, like heights. The numinous disturbs.
The infinite unsettles things. The miraculous can only mean that we were wrong.
The tragedy of wasted love, a river's unrequited generosity, the vertigo of forgiveness,
the heartbreaking tale of a certain rise in the earth or a green branch, given without explanation,
the disorienting presence of the kid in a dirty t-shirt who could be trouble, could be the Messiah—
oh, so much that's out of our hands could overrun our hearts. It's all too much.
When once you rowed your little boat over the surface of the great silence and looked through the gathering depths...
—well, not again. Though the saints only appear to be in grave danger on their tightropes,
and they never fall—still, we avert out hearts. You could slip forever into the unfolding rose,
so we don't go near. You could be consumed by wonder, awestruck so hard you can't regain control.
Too much will hurt, we say, a surfeit of divine presence—lurking in the ordinary— burns. So we don't look at all.
It's ouranophobia, the fear of heaven. We avoid too much splendor, mystery
or love. We fight it without knowing. We flee the moment. We wish. We understand. We keep talking.
And God gently, grandly returns again and again, dawning irresistibly, drawing us toward the edge,
the sudden, helpless, glorious fall, gut-floating and irreversible, through those unyielding pearly gates.
No— before you even open your eyes, count the cost. Something close to worship will steal your mastery, your deserving,
your life. Love and wonder will devour you. You'll have nothing left but that.
Deep Blessings, Pastor Steve
_______________________________ Copyright © Steve Garnaas-Holmes Unfolding Light unfoldinglight.net