I feel like I carry a burden and a sigh from I don’t know where, strong enough, painful enough and lavishly clear. The wings of beauty will show up, I think, with their irresistible joy in the flow of peace and beauty of this moment. My heart melts in some unspoken words, in a silent prayer. Maybe what drives me to Him in this moment is the pain I never felt before from someone’s darkness of loneliness and despair. I have been there and so often my own darkness devoured my rest. I cried it out just to hear it coming back to me, multiplied by the echoes of my own emptiness.
This morning is different – so much different! The raw sand of this Mexican beach, its wetness and coolness after the scorching heat of yesterday seem to connect me again with the distant shore of peace and tranquility that my soul has been searching for. Just within the last couple of days I developed a somehow more than a “how are you” friendship with Scott and Samantha, Keith and Melissa, the French Fabian and Kate, Heidi and Anna, mother and daughter … We even know each other by name.
This morning, on this sandy shore of Mexico as the ocean caresses my feet in the quiet hour of the morning and the waves send towards me this craved-for mist of coolness, my loneliness has morphed into blessed moments of serenity and a quiet conversation with my Creator. It is this display of beauty that talks to me from Him, the cool ocean spray that touches me from Him, it is the mighty rush of waves that reassures me from Him… Every drop, every vapor particle is here for me, for my restless soul to finally hang the hat of futility on His outstretched hand of love. It is He all around, in the deepest of the sea, in the clearest of the sky or in the grayest of the clouds…
Then Melissa and Scott, Samantha and Keith, and Kate and Fabian came to my mind. Their loud laughter and colorful language animated the over-hearers with curiosity. I was happy I could call them by their first names. When I saw Scott and Melissa the other day, that loud laughter and colorful talking were not there anymore. I used to see them as God’s treasure boxes buried in a deep illusion of happiness. Hmm, I wish could dig them out and bring them here to this serene Mexican ocean shore and soak them in this majestic display of love. Will I see them laughing again? Will I ever see a smile of tranquility on their faces? As I last saw them, they rather looked like jars of hidden and unspoken sorrow.
“Then sings my soul, my Savior Lord to Thee, How great Thou art, how great Thou art…” Right there, right then, a humble wave gently surrendered at my hot feet, and a soft, cool breeze enveloped me like a mantle of royal silk. “Yours, I am totally yours, my Lord!”
These moments of serenity deeply engraved in my heart the truth that He is here and everywhere. He is to be found as our hearts take the time that would otherwise be wasted on our egos to lay it down at His feet and quietly watch the display of His creation.
There must be more, I think, a lot more from Him this morning at the feast set before me in the prospect of all my future worries and day-to-day struggles. I spotted two little black stones close to one another among a multitude of shaped or shapeless stones. They, the two stones I picked, were beautiful. Black and beautiful. One of them was thin and perfectly round like a coin; the other one was almost perfectly spherical. Hmm, my mind suddenly went into overdrive mode. Oh, I know, the ocean, its waves, rocks colliding with each other, a storm, an earthquake here and there, a tsunami, a meteor and who knows what else, worked together to bring these two rocks to this shape, at this shore, for this moment. Then I smiled amused by a new thought: do they, the rocks that is, talk to each other? “You’re so thin! How did you do that?” The other one seems to answer: “But you are too chubby! Will you lose some weight anytime soon?” This brought another smile on my face as I remembered yesterday’s dialog between Melissa and Samantha. But, looking at the two rocks in the palm of my hand, my smile vanished. Where did these rocks come from? Then, like in a fast tracked movie I saw a rocky mountain crushing some ocean’s waves. All of a sudden, in the background of mist, white foam and the powerful wave-crushing noise, something cataclysmic, another infinitely more powerful noise broke the common sense of nature, the earth shook, the sky darkened… then I watched all this chaos dimming down and the sun shining above a totally new horizon. A whole left side of the mountain was gone. “Are you it?”, I said looking at the two beautifully-shaped rocks in my hand. I knew then that I was holding in my hand a mountain or two from long ago. I am holding in my hand thousands of years of history of a mountain tumbled through present and former oceans, from a far shore to another far shore to here and now. If these rocks could think of self, would they know their true self? Will I ever know who I am? Will you?
Maybe we will never know who we are until we see and know the empty space we caused behind us at the shore we left. In the heart of the Father we once left a big and painful void. Ever since we were born, the cry of the void within our heart has been deafening the universe.
Maybe I am like one of these stones, socially shaped, polished by doctrines and dogmas, reduced to a socially accepted roundness, not knowing more of myself than what that roundness contains as matter and color. Maybe the stones around me and the sand, and the colors, and the saltiness will one day find their true selves, filling again the empty space.
We are loved by God and that should be the core of understanding who we really are. The love we cherish for our wives or husbands is originating in an unparalleled attraction towards a sole and most significant other. Each of us is that unique someone for whom the heart of God is longing. We left that happy shore of Eden on the day we first sinned, leaving behind us a void as vast as God’s love. We will, one day, fill that void through the glorious reunion with Him.
Then, I believe, only then the cry of emptiness that is deafening the universe now will become a symphony of beauty and completeness.
“For in him we live, and move, and have our being; as certain also of your own poets have said, For we are also his offspring.” (Acts 17:28)