As a high school student, I knew where I was going in life. I would graduate at the top of my class, enroll at a top-tier university, work at a large private law firm and eventually find a way into politics. I wanted to be well-known, well-liked and well-off (not necessarily in that order). But along the way, I had an experience that changed the course of my life. On a family trip along the Oregon Coast, I was “impressed” with a question. It was just in my head, but I knew it wasn’t from me: “Would you be willing to give up what you want in order to make a difference?” I suspected that God was the asker, and I couldn’t stop thinking about what it might mean. Whatever it meant, however, I knew it was what I really wanted, what I really needed.
Over the years, I’ve had a variety of experiences like that one – times when I’ve had a dream that provided clarity, times when I’ve heard someone say something they didn’t actually say, times when I’ve been “impressed” with a question or an insight or a new perspective, times that I’ve only recently come to recognize as mystical.
So I’m reading the mystics. Because I hope
to learn how to listen better,
to recognize the workings of God in my life and in the lives of those I love,
to better attend to the daily presence of a God who desires for me to experience the communion that brings joy, peace, love and life.
I suspected that God was the asker, and I couldn’t stop thinking about what it might mean.