Sunday, September 4, 2011

passionate wandering

several years ago, i read a book by elizabeth margaret rees, , celtic saints:  passionate wanderers.  it describes, rather obviously, the wanderings of celtic saints, mostly towards the end of the first millenium a. d.  i have re-read it several times, or at least fondled it, looking at the paths and traces of those who went out looking to see what the holy one had done.  and i have done a little  moderate wandering myself.

but i had convinced myself that i had settled into my little glass observatory, much like merlin, looking out on the great void in the land of lime stone and loblolly pine that is the ozarks.  my plumbline had indeed fallen in a fortunate place.

ah, it was not so.  i find myself wandering again, as passionately as ever, as overwhelmed by the beauty of what the holy one has done as ever, and more appalled by how we have treated that good creation than ever.  i am not nor have i ever been a calvinist, but it is easy for me to find in my trip so far evidence not only for original sin but for total depravity.  faith is the evidence of things unseen, and the goodness of human beings requires a lot of faith.  of course there are individual exceptions, but the effect of the whole is pretty horrible to behold.

and so i wander, squinting to see the eighth day of creation through the weekend of football and markets of tie-dyed tee shirts and organic trinkets.  and, if i am quiet, it is there.  the kingdom of heaven is at hand.  i feel like emily in our town, wishing we could all see the streams of glory.

the wandering through the passions is easy.  pray it will bring me closer to saintliness.  it's a long and straight road.