Our hearts are restless, are they not?
If you've lived more than a few seconds on this spinning globe, you've been restless.
One thing I've learned is that restlessness wants action. Craves a quick, knee jerk reaction that gets us from that itchy feeling, that's crawling its way towards our crown, to a place of ease and release. Or, for the drama junky, restlessness can show up in the midst of peace, and the hit that brings sweet release is a proverbial fire started some where in our lives....a little chaos to drowned out the dissatisfaction....
I'd say that for each of us, restlessness shows up in different ways. What's yours?
The spiritual journey is not immune to restlessness. God knows.
So what do we do about it? How do we learn to stay with those restless thoughts and feelings, allowing ourselves to excavate a little bit, so that we don't burn our lives down around us, while we try to escape? Or we don't stop seeking God during burn out or despair?
The 7 Rounding Paths to God. That's how.
Search and Surrender
How Goes the Battle?
The Stripping of the Altar
New Every Day
In his book, Our Hearts are Restless, Richard Lischer dissects the art of spiritual memoir to flesh out these 7 Rounding Paths to God.
Through seeing the journeys of others, we often find a match for our restlessness, a match for our discontent, our heartbreak, our need. Simultaneously we can find the beauty of strength, resiliency, hope, and solidarity in the voice of those who have gone before us, and have clung to God, come what may.
What is the story of your life? What are the paths that God keeps taking you down? How do you deal with restlessness?
Spend some time this month, adventuring down these 7 paths. What I have written in each box of the handout, are just some prompts. Examine these paths, what do they mean to you? How would you narrate them, how would you define them?
In venturing down them, you may find some answers to your restlessness. You may find some joy too. We all need joy. We all need meaning and purpose.
Be blessed in the restlessness. Stay. No knee jerk reaction.