When I am all consciousness
I swim in breaking waves and grasp about for tethers
upon which to anchor my vitality
through my writing.
This bauble attracts me and I set out
with a mad stroke to capture it.
That object looms into view
and I backstroke with abandon toward its bobbing form
upon my mental waters.
I am even content to remain ostensibly stationary
for I still create energy and waves
by my treading.
These are the places of felicity
where frolicking lends itself to humor
and ideas crash and spray against the rocks
in gleaming sunlight.
But left stranded on shore
without my mad splashing to distract me
and the impressions and images that are ever with me
I rise to follow the gentle swing
of the ebb and flow below the fray.
I sway downward past the wildness of the surface
into the muddy silt of stillness
where distraction is spent
and light softly shares its shadow
It is there
through opaque and muted contours
clarity is born.
for all its loveliness
is also mewling and messy.
(By Robynn Reilly)
And it takes time. It takes the very thing we feel we can least afford. But without it, nothing would continue and change could not be effected. We travail, and after a time, we pray that our laboring has not been in vain.
My thoughts there have given birth to sadness and great compassion for those who are wounded within our homeschooling group, but it has also come with courage.
I could write volumes here about outlandish remarks, judgements, and bullying directed toward women and children by a few men within this local community, and believe me when I say my flesh is sorely tempted to create a list. But it would change little and reduce me.
What I feel compelled to do is to stop grumbling (which does nothing) and be brave enough to call behavior what it is. Some things are worth standing up for and speaking out against, especially when it tears at the very fabric of something so precious.
I can pray for their censure so more are not injured, and perhaps that will happen. But I also realize contrite and humble hearts are necessary and people must be willing to change. I struggle to have faith or vision for such a possibility as these are old, established patterns. Hubris, adorned in the torn and tattered clothes of false piety, seems rarely to recognize its own near nakedness. But I am required to believe change is possible. I don't get a pass.
And then I want to shout from the rooftops to the injured: "This isn't us! This isn't who we strive to be! Please don't see us through the distorted lens that has been provided!" I want to rush in and fix the hurts and tend to the wounds. I want my own pain to be healed. Mostly, I want to see our community lovingly supporting each other and operating in ways of blessing even when we differ. Maybe, especially when we differ.
So, what do I do?
I have to recognize my own heart must be examined everyday and that's a full time, never-ending job where ugliness can take up residence too easily. I must strive to be the thing I long for; I must pray for change; I'm required to have courage when it's called for and to seek wisdom I may not possess. I must have an abundantly grateful heart for the large numbers of men and women within this community who are loving and kind servants, and who possess the courage, gentleness, and self-sacrificing willingness to serve in humility. They are the majority! I must rejoice and be glad!
And finally, I have to swim hard for the surface because it's time to breathe fresh air and exult in the wonderful absurdities of life. They make me laugh and I miss laughing with YOU. Because it really is true......."A merry heart (DOES!) doeth good, like a medicine!" (Proverbs 17:22 KJV)
"....weeping may endure for a night but joy cometh in the morning." (Psalm 30:5b KJV)
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