Ouch: Further Reflection on Daring to Become Dependent
The past couple of weeks have been very busy for me. It seems like just about every evening there are two or three events that I should attend, usually at the same time. So, I’ve not been going to a lot of things I would have liked to go to. It seems like this is going to continue for at least a couple more weeks.
It has significantly impacted my writing. Some of the events I’ve missed have been writing events, and when I get home, I don’t have the energy to write, especially not the energy to try and write a poem a day, which had been my goal for Lent, and then for Poetry Month.
This evening, I have only one event scheduled, but I expect it to be exhausting.
This morning, a friend posted a daily reflection online that particularly jumped out at me.
Daring to Become Dependent
When someone gives us a watch but we never wear it, the watch is not really received. When someone offers us an idea but we do not respond to it, that idea is not truly received. When someone introduces us to a friend but we ignore him or her, that friend does not feel well received.
Receiving is an art. It means allowing the other to become part of our lives. It means daring to become dependent on the other. It asks for the inner freedom to say: "Without you I wouldn't be who I am." Receiving with the heart is therefore a gesture of humility and love. So many people have been deeply hurt because their gifts were not well received. Let us be good receivers.
For further reflection...
Jacob's well was there, and Jesus, tired as he was from the journey, sat down by the well. It was about the sixth hour. When a Samaritan woman came to draw water, Jesus said to her, "Will you give me a drink?" (His disciples had gone into the town to buy food.) The Samaritan woman said to him, "You are a Jew and I am a Samaritan woman. How can you ask me for a drink?" (For Jews do not associate with Samaritans.) Jesus answered her, "If you knew the gift of God and who it is that asks you for a drink, you would have asked him and he would have given you living water." - John 4: 6 - 10 (NIV)
How can you practice the art of receiving today?
At various church events, we often talk about the Guidelines for Mutuality. One of the guidelines is about practicing self-focus.
When we are practicing self-focus and noticing a feeling of fear, anger, or loss, we might want to literally say “ouch” to alert the group to the impact that some words or actions are having on us.
This came to mind as I read the daily reflection. “Ouch”. Most of the people in my family are much better at showing appreciation when they receive a gift. I’m not as good at it as they are. Yet our house is filled with gifts I’ve given and received that have remained unused.
I think of this also in terms of the gifts God gives us. Do we use those gifts? Do we offer ourselves with these gifts as gifts to others? How are our gifts to our communities received?
I think of that as I pray about my meeting at the end of the day, and all I can say is “ouch.”