Love Amid Morning Light’s Ambush
Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God (Matthew 5:8).
Every morning after I awaken, I dart about, exercise, get up and down several times while eating breakfast, and drive just a few notches above the speed limit to work.
Yet, I pray. The hard way, a way that seeks quiet and stillness within even as I scurry here and there. Only later do I center in silence.
Until then, I focus my intention to open my heart and receive God’s love, to really sense it even as I move about now and through the day. With this intention, I quite deliberately set up an internal conflict. For while I want nothing more than God’s love, I fidget and seek distractions.
They say, you know, that if I see the face of God, I will die. Or if I allow the divine to touch me, I may sense the uncleanness of my heart that memory and my inner critic already will not let me overlook.
But the desire to receive God’s love will not abate either, and no matter how rude the memories or criticisms, I know it pleases God for me to open my heart that way. God reckons the opening as love.
I am writing here about windows and mirrors: windows to God, mirrors to my soul, the desire for illumination, the retreat to darkness. That is what all the moving is about, seeking an impossible escape from the morning light for which my soul reaches like a flower.
“For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then we will see face to face. Now I know only in part; then I will know fully, even as I have been fully known” (1 Corinthians 13:12), Paul the mystical poet wrote in his song of love. For only love knows the important things. Only love sees. So in spite of myself and because of myself, I open my heart in the hurry amid morning light’s ambush.
We biblical people read so much of fire. We speak of it, even dream of it. For good reason. For suffering is a fire that either consumes us, leaving only smoke to our name, or it cleanses us. Sometimes I rage at God over that cruel method of getting us to open our eyes. More often, though, I praise God for it. It takes the absurdity out of pain.
O Lord, I would not persist in opening my heart if not for the fire, the remembrance of pain. But cleanse me gently today. Wipe away the dust and residue from the glass that reflects me and illumines you, the mirror and window at once.
I have no right to ask it, Lord. Except that you love me.
For reflection and comment: What do you notice when you open your heart to God?
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