Speaking of her late husband, Kathleen Norris writes,
I could not make him… but I could be his companion in making a life worth living.
Acedia & Me , p.258
What makes my life worth living? A BIG question, in the first place, and then the idea that it’s not just me figuring it out; I am a companion in that journey. For me the tension involves the first part of her sentence, how to not make, suggest, control, fix; but to be in that relationship. How does that happen?
My pondering seemed to have run its course, after all these questions take a lifetime. I thought I’d moved on as I was prayerfully reading Luke’s gospel, chapters 5 and 6 that hold stories of many early encounters with people along the way.
First, I noticed that Jesus cultivated relationships that enabled and motivated those people to “rise up and walk” in a myriad of ways (Ch.5). That action in itself is a worthy calling.
However, the rising up and walking stirred the community. In response, “amazement seized them all and they glorified God and were filled with awe, saying, ‘we have seen strange things today.’ ”
Being amazed, cultivating wonder, being open to seeing the strange in the presence of God each day makes a life worth living.
In Luke, chapter 6, rising up and walking runs into rules and regulations. My rules and regulations are not as noble as keeping the Sabbath and implicitly drive my fixing and floundering to undermine being a companion, walking alongside.
Jesus again elevates being in relationship over the law, to do good rather than harm, to save life rather than destroy it.
Truths to try out for cultivating a life worth living:
Be open to the wonder of God in today.
Choose what gives life.