through our stars.
We are pilgrims here; we build homes and call them lives, but in the end they are only shadows of something much deeper that we cannot explain, but only feel – this longing described by the wisest in the simplest of terms: the desire to return. I can’t dispute this. I watched the winter turn the spring and the spring now fade into summer. I think we find the greatest solace in nature not merely because it’s beauty, but because the innocence that is untouched by the brokenness of our own hearts and lives. It, like our ambitions, is a shadow cast by the light of some greater desire to find in us something fleeting. We wrestle in this place: with ourselves, with our surroundings, and with our God.
“At present we are on the outside of the world, the wrong side of the door. We discern the freshness and purity of the morning, but they do not make us fresh and pure. We cannot mingle with the splendors we see… Some day, God willing, we shall get in.” – C.S. Lewis
All entertainment, all plans, all dreams point lead us back to the desire to return home. I think I see this is the reflection of others more now because I have tasted it in my own heart; yet only in doses and always with honesty. Every person who passes me by wants something they don’t have and they all have goals they are working toward. Some people seem stuck in their situation and become discouraged as the more they try the deeper they dig and people began to discount them – overlook them. Dreams can tell you two things about a person: the level of ambition, or the level of despair; either way we are are given the choice to either help them or get out of the way.
Many of the themes in my life have been reciprocal: home, sufficiency, truth, everything ties together in the end and the more I admit I don’t know, the more I understand. This is the irony of life, to find, we must lose, because beyond the shadows of the forest in our heart stands a Savior who walks through the the forest to find those lost; those who have left behind their expectations. I use to think the message of salvation was a formula I had to remember and recount, but it’s nothing of the sort, yet boiled down to – He is looking for you. If you go into any coffee shop in any place and engage an honest conversation and a conversation of hope, then you will find a crack of light in the door of the heart – always. It’s not pie in the sky but just this simple request from the One who came to die: “Come home.”
This has moved me in many ways, and moved to action. Somethings I cannot talk about at this point: out of need and discretion, but working with rescue missions and shelters. I am pushing this summer forward with what has been on my heart for so long – here in Charlotte, to reach out to the church and to the poor/homeless. Charity is the healing water; we are like the lame man in John 5 and cannot bring ourselves to touch it. But there is a Savior who comes to us and asks: “Do you want to be healed?”
The poverty of the West is the poverty of the heart – the less we care, the more we die. The more we die, the more we long to be restored. We long for something we have lost: charity, real love, but we cannot get back because we haven’t come to our end to say: “I cannot be healed because nobody can take me to those waters.” Do you see? I am not poor as poverty would count, but spiritually the closer I come to innocence and seeing brokenness, the more I feel as a refugee in my heart. We all want something we do not have, but often what we seek is not what we truly want.
This all to say, I have set aside the expectations of what I sought in the future to open up what I am able to give what I can – this summer and on. In doing this, I have been given the resources I need and the people support me. I set aside the expectations and come to a better place. This is not my home and so this is not my brokenness. This is not my brokenness and so this is not my healing. I am only a vessel. I am only a son standing on the outside of this door. I kick against the pain inside because it is not forever – but every disappointment becomes a star in the sky of my heart, a billion that form together to make some great map to lead me home, to lead others home, that though our stars they may come to the door of the Father’s house as well – this is the gospel.
Those who are wise will shine like the brightness of the heavens, and those who lead many to righteousness, like the stars for ever and ever. – Daniel 12:3