Some nights I don’t sleep well. I lay awake, sleepless, not wanting to look at the time, especially if I’ve had a tiny taste of the elusive sleep and I have to get up early to be somewhere. Like the night a few weeks ago. I was meeting my friend, riding 80 something miles to Portland together, followed by a slightly longer drive alone the next day. Two days in a row, up and on the road early.
Laying half awake, bladder hurting because I need to go empty it, I don’t want to move. I am thinking if I get up, I’ll never get back to sleep and my question to Jesus in this moment is this (Yeah!) Did you have to pee in the middle of the night? What did you do ? Pretty sure you got up and took care of business instead of laying there deliberating the pros and cons and asking a ton of questions! What did you do when sleep eluded you? Did your body feel pain? How did you handle it?
Did you do like Elana Miller of Zen Psychiatry? She is now, as I have been over the past few years, learning to gently meet the pain … to expand into it, to breathe into it, giving it space. The alternative is to constrict around it, to bring it inward and to remove the “wiggle room” To squeeze out the light, the lightness of being, giving the pain no place to diffuse, inviting suffering. Constriction invites suffering.
Did you suffer? Did you constrict around the pain of the creation that you came to redeem? Or did you embrace it? How did that work? We can’t bear the pain of our one life let alone the huge weight of the pain of all of humanity ever.
In that place of expansion into the pain, is that a place where we can meet you … when the constriction is so tight that there is no more to constrict? And the only choice seems to expand into it or die?
To die to the smallness … the tightness of our own restrictive beliefs and whoosh!! Blossom into the One living within … the One who has been there all along … Waiting for this moment in the experience of time?
You! The One who created all of this for us .:. Because you want to share your union as the three in One with us … with all of humanity.
I hear you telling me to keep my eyes off of all contradiction and fully focused on YOU, who YOU are.
To me. In me. As me.
United with me, as me, how do you express?
No comparison with anyone else. No concern about how I will be received by the “others”. Just pure fascination with how You express through me … and out of that a growing appreciation for how You express through others.
IT WILL BE DIFFERENT.
Learning to see you – Christ – in the face of everyone I meet. Fully knowing that the expression will look different every time. Fascination with the difference! The LOVE that you are does not change. You are changeless, yet your expression through each of us changes. What an intriguing dance, this One Life. One Love.
This is freedom!! And this freedom is truly FREEDOM. It is a scary proposition. No boxes to contain me. What do I do with that? [when all I've ever know are boxes of one sort or another?] Freedom means I can fall flat on my face. It also means that I can fly in to the fullness of me. My original design. In LOVE with the One who designed me knowing that all of this is because the Existing One loves me so deeply, so without condition. You, the Existing ONE.
YOU. LOVE. ME.
My eyes. Locked in to Yours. Seeing only Love.
Puts a new spin on freedom!
(I love sleepless nights! Look where they lead me!)