Which makes it even more surprising when, while channel surfing late at night a few weeks ago, I became enamored by reruns of the television hit, Extreme Makeovers: Home Edition (not to be confused with the Extreme Makers – plastic surgery, wedding, or weight loss editions!). Despite being a confessed mechanical moron, I am deeply impressed with those people who have wonderful mechanical skills and know how remodel homes, exterior and interior. Perhaps a tad more than “impressed.” Okay, I am downright envious on them!
With those remodeling masters from Extreme Makeovers fresh in my thinking, this challenging piece of dialogue from Noah benShea’s clever book Jacob’s Journey came to mind:
“All of us are magicians,” said Jacob. “With great skill we shift who we are as if we were peas under walnut shells. Soon, we ourselves have no idea where we are hidden. Soon, pride in our camouflage causes us to become caught in our own slight of hand.”
“Well,” said the young man, “at least I’m not old like my grandfather. He sits with his chin resting on his cane, doing nothing for hours. I have my whole life ahead of me.”
“You do have your whole life in front of you,’ said Jacob, “and yet life is an experience not only of breadth, but of depth. As you grow older, the game of life goes inside, making room for memory. The interior life is no less real, and in some ways more private, more ‘yours.’”
“But,” said the young man, “what do you think my grandfather spends so much time thinking about?”
“Maybe he is thinking about you.”
“Yes,” said Jacob. “Maybe he’s worried that his grandson is living only on the surface of life, and he wonders when you’ll come inside.”
Spirituality is bi-directional. Most certainly, spirituality looks ‘up’ to our God, but authentic spirituality invites – no, demands – we journey within, to the inside, and consider the possibility of doing some divine remodeling. SELAH (stop and think about it).
Glad to be your (transitional) pastor. DON