Friday, February 10, 2012

A meditation on rocks

God came to a woman and said, I have a job for you. 

She said, "Of course, I'll do anything." 

 God pointed to a wagon with some rocks in it... not a lot, but enough.  God said, Carry those to the top of the mountain.

She pulled the wagon and said, "This isn't really hard, are you sure this is what you want me to do?"

God nodded.

As she pulled the wagon, she passed many people.  When they heard what she was doing, they said, "Hey, I have some rocks I need to have taken, but I don't have time.  Will you just add mine?"

She thought about how God wanted her to help others, and so she said, of course.  Some added big rocks, some added small rocks, some added just a handful of sand.  But soon the wagon was overflowing and was very very hard to pull.

Finally she sat down and cried.  "God, what have you done?  How can you expect me to do ALL of this?"

God said to her, what are you doing?  What is all of this?

She said, "Rocks.  You asked me to take them.  And you asked me to help others."

God reached in and began removing the extra rocks, pebbles, and sand.  Yes, help others, but don't take on their burdens when they aren't willing to carry them themselves.  These aren't your rocks.

The woman looked at the wagon with the original rocks.  "Is that all you want me to do?"

God nodded.

The woman looked at God.  "Are you sure?"

I have been thinking about my rocks recently.  I think I've taken on too many. 

Some were my rocks but aren't any more... it's time to move on.  That is really hard for me to do.  Am I quitting?  No, I'm finished.  But it feels like quitting.  But I'm not helping as much, it doesn't feel right, I still love the rock, but it's time to put it down.

Some looked like my rocks, but I think I misunderstood.  Just because I can do something doesn't mean I should do it.  And contrary to popular opinion (mine), I'm not always right.  I'm not always the go-to girl.  Sometimes I need to let that rock go.  Lose control. 

Some are rocks others gave me because they thought I'd be good at carrying them.  They were wrong.

Some are my rocks right now, but will not be forever.

Some have been my rocks for a long time and will always be my rocks.  But now they are different (I'd do a metamorphic analogy, but that seems too hard.)  Mostly they are their own rocks.  I just have to love and admire them, I don't have to carry them anymore.

And some are my pebbles on Saturday night, but not all the time.  And those, I just love and hug and raise up with joy.

I could go on, but I think maybe I need to meditate and pray on this one.  What are my rocks?  And what aren't?  And how do I know the difference?

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

A dream

Last night I dreamed that I visited a new friend at her house.  The house was by the ocean, which surprised me, since we live in Columbia, SC.  But this is a dream, and in my dreams, all houses are by the ocean.

While I was visiting other people came.  They were her other friends and they were bringing food and drink for a party.  It looked wonderful --- focaccia studded with chunks of yellow, red, and orange peppers; bread with chunky vegetable and cheese spreads; wines and of course, sweet tea.  At first I didn't eat because I was trying to find my son and make sure he was OK.  Then I sort of felt uncomfortable eating.  Maybe a little hurt that no one asked me to come in and eat.  Everyone was having such a good time, but I didn't know them.

When I finally decided to eat, the food had been packed up.  I got a little piece of bread and cheese, and felt very sad that I hadn't gone in earlier for more.

When everyone was gone, I saw my friend crying.  I said, "I'm sorry I didn't eat your food.  I didn't know if I was invited."

And she said, "You were here.  You didn't have to ask."

Tuesday, February 7, 2012


It is tax season, the time when all of my other busyness gets pushed aside for my business-busyness.  I always say (as I complain that I am tired, stretched, stressed) that I can't complain, because this is how I make money.  If I don't make it now, it doesn't get made.

Tax season is not the time to think about the wisdom of that decision.

I enjoy preparing taxes, researching interesting tax issues, solving problems.  For short periods of time, my mild Introvert can enjoy talking to people, learning what has changed in their lives in the past year, celebrating and commiserating with my once-a-year friends.  I don't like telling people that, for instance, taking all of your money out of your 401(k) to buy a Corvette may have seemed like a good idea in June, but right now you owe several thousand dollars in taxes.  I hate it when people cry. 

But that's not really what I'm thinking about right now. 

In a class I'm taking... introduction to spiritual autobiography... I came upon a truth I've had hidden in my closet under a pile of clothes I don't wear anymore, beside a box of books I've read and meant to donate, on top of a basket of yarn I'm going to make into scarves and sweaters and baby blankets for babies on their way to college.  I remembered that I am a hoarder.  I have lots and lots of stuff that I might need some day, but can't find when I want it.  I recently found three staple removers in a drawer.  I can't find any when I want them... note the fingernails.

But that's not new, we've talked about that.  The assignment was to list and describe things you cherish.  From childhood, youth, yesterday.  What do you have that sits in the shrine in your soul?

And I realized that I have nothing.  I have things that are important to me, and as I think about it, I remember more.  But very often I think, well yeah, that's important, but where is it?  It's covered with all of that stuff that isn't important... the stuff that protects me from... from what?

I have thought (on and off) for a while that I need to winnow my space if I want to order my soul, but I am very very afraid to do it.

And so, my intention for this week and month, in the middle of tax season, in the middle of a mild mild winter, is to winnow.  Just a little.  Just a small patch at a time.  Just to see if I can survive.