Monday, May 12, 2008

The Invitation

I began a blog under the name “circle journal” well over a year ago. I have been so completely changed by this past year I needed to start over. The purpose of Simple Abundance, although focused specifically on everyday gifts, is similar as before in that I want it to be a place where I can be real and you can be real back so we can truly know one another.

I love the poem “The Invitation” by Oriah Mountain Dreamer. In many ways it sums up what I long for in my relationships with people I care about.

It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living.
I want to know what you ache for
and if you dare to dream of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me how old you are.
I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me what planets are squaring your moon…
I want to know if you have touched the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened by life’s betrayals
or have become shriveled and closed
from fear of further pain.

I want to know if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations of being human.

It doesn’t interest me if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.

I want to know if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn’t interest me
to know where you live or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.

It doesn’t interest me where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.

I want to know if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like the company you keep
in the empty moments.

Today I am thankful for the amazing gift of my friend, Angie. From childhood she and I accepted this invitation from one another. Although we grew apart for a time, God has brought her back into my life, and it is as if she never left. Lately, through her struggle with breast cancer, I have had to relearn how to sit with her pain without moving to hide it or fade or fix it. I have rediscovered how to see her beauty even when it is not pretty. Her courage and faith have reminded me of what sustains us both from the inside when everything else falls away. "Thank you, God, for this amazing woman and true friend. Please strengthen her today and bring healing to her body and spirit."

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