Letting In the Light of Easter
At some point in our education, we heard the wisdom from the Ancient Greeks, “Know thyself.” Did you know that is the first of three maxims that are inscribed outside the Temple of Apollo? The other two, because I know you are curious, were: “nothing in excess” and “surety brings ruin”. Suddenly you might realize why the other two maxims never quite caught on in our current climate. But we are fascinated by trying to know ourselves. Exhibit A of evidence for this is the “Self-help” section of any library has pages upon pages of words devoted to this topic. Exhibit B are podcasts produced every day for you to living your best life every where you thrive. Exhibit C is just Google “how to know yourself” and in less than a second there are almost two billion possible responses and results for you to view. So, you know, feel free to look over those at lunch!
The quest to know ourselves is endless and eternal. Actually starts at a young age. I remember moments when one of my children colored on the wall or didn’t study for a test or did something I wish they had not done. When frustration fumed off me I would ask, “Why did you do that?” Of course, the reply was often, “I don’t know.” Looking back, I now see how that is so true for me. Why did I say that last night at the meeting? Why did I procrastinate when my gut was saying, “Go head take the risk.”? Why do I do what I do.
It wasn’t just philosophy that finds this mystery of why we do what we do fascinating. The Apostle Paul says in Romans, “I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate.”
We are a mystery. Or as Kristen Bell once said, “We are our own best science experiments.” To explore our lives with an endless curiosity is an invitation. But we need to be careful because often when we begin to ask why we are doing what we are doing, we have to get out the umbrella because it is raining guilt. This is perhaps because of those childhood memories of being disciplined when we disappointed our parent. But grace and good news of Easter says, we can ask questions of why trusting in God’s original blessing and God who calls each of us, “Beloved.”
Keep turning the question, what is it like to be you, in your mind, heart, and soul. Keep prayerfully pondering how the past, present, and future are meeting in you. And continue to find ways to explore your life gently and gracefully. Stay open to the faithful, fascinating ways you embody and live in these days.
Prayer: God, continue to open me to the ways You are at work within me and beyond me and beside me this day. Amen.