Wednesday, November 14, 2012

"This is where the healing begins..."

“This is where the healing begins.
Oh, this is where the healing starts.
When you come to where
you're broken within
the light meets the dark...”

It's another Tenth Avenue North song day. And  "Healing Begins,"  is so full of promise...and reminders.

When I was a girl, I was very small.  I felt like a real-life-girl version of Thumbelina.  Seriously.  I often wondered if there was something wrong with whatever it was that controlled my size.   

Now, you may think that this petite view of myself, contributed to a diminutive sense of how to "be in the world." It did.   But not in a good way.

If men can have a Napoleonic complex, then I had whatever the female version this was...verbally.  I used big words to push my way through scary moments. 

 If someone was physically threatening, I would beat them up with their intellectual weaknesses.  If someone was being dully brutal, I would be brutally honest, often bashing others over the head with what I thought was "witty sarcasm."  

Only it wasn't funny, it was cruel.

I thought it made me a survivor.  It only made me mean.

You might think it took someone doing the same thing to me, to get me to stop.  Nope.

What shattered my shiny, brittle veneer was hearing my version of "funny," coming out of the mouth of a child I cared about.  This was what finally began to chip away at those sharp edges, and hone a softer heart.

Hearing one of my kindergarten students treat a young bully on the playground as if he were a dolt, laughing at his weaknesses, and hurting his feelings was heartbreaking.  It was horrifying, self-shattering, and a good way.  

And this breaking open of my heart, was just the first step in healing what was at the root of my problem -- thinking that witty, sarcastic cynicism was acceptable, if you were little and felt picked on. 

But the problem really started with the way I thought and felt about God.

My concept of God was too small.  I thought that God's love was partial to human perfection.  I thought that God would be more inclined to defend and protect me if I was deserving.  And I just never thought I was good enough.  I thought my life was stunted. 

I felt handicapped by genetics, socio-economic circumstances, educational opportunities, physical size, psycho-social history. I was only half deserving. 

Yes, there was the spiritual me who went to Sunday School as a child, and believed she had a relationship to God.  This me  knew, on an intellectual level,  that God's Love was impartial and universal. 

But then there was the "little" me.  The me that was beat down by all her historic human building blocks and personal idiosyncrasies.  And it was this little me who thought she had to defend herself with a smart, sassy mouth. 

 Not true...

When I heard the little girl on the playground defend herself with such sharp word weapons, my heart broke open.  I started to see a fragile beam of Love's pure light (expressed as my love for her innocence and purity) radiating from a hidden place deep within me. 

Starting as a glimmer of love for that child, it began to shatter what was left of my hardness,  broadening into an ever-expanding, wider band of heavenly light. 

Love does that. It causes us to face our own darkness.  And since what is deepest within us is light...we shatter our own darkness.

That day, what began as the hot tears of self-dispair, became the very solvent for melting what Mary Baker Eddy calls:

"the adamant (hardness) of error: 

I don't know that I've fully kicked Miss Scaredy-cat, Smart-mouth out for the last time. But I do know this:  Love for a child made me face the lie of smallness -- of God's love, or of my heart.  It  convinced me that I'm not a scared, angry little wildcat.

Sometimes love allows us to see ourselves as we truly are.  And those who believe they carry the smallest promise, have the audacity to think they can make a difference in the world.  

I believe we all have this deep spiritual  intuition.  We sense a  largeness of being residing within us.  It is an abiding awareness that give us the confidence to believe that we are more..infinitely more...than the distorted view of ourselves we are trying to defend...from the bully within.  

offered with Love,


1 comment:

  1. Kate,thanks for your thoughts on man's purity and innocence. We must know this for our neighbor and ourselves.