Most all of you have heard them. The catchy phrases used to try to communicate something that is hard to communicate with language. Phrases like “let go and let God,” “when God closes one door God opens another”, or “It all happens for a reason, it will all work out.” Maybe at times, you like me, have become angry when someone says this? There have been so many times that I felt like saying “seriously… do you mean to tell me that this crisis moment in my life or another’s life can be reduced down to this catchy phrase and this will make me feel better!!?” I have come to the conclusion that when this is said that it is not someone’s idea of being cute or just a small pep talk. Instead, I think there are certain things that simply cannot be expressed with words. Honestly, matters of faith are really hard to describe. I mean how do we describe that which cannot be seen or touched? Our entire ability to describe something is based on our senses. Matters of faith defy all of that; some would say matters of faith even defy logic. Logic takes us so far then there is that which we can’t be sure of. Can I prove there is no God? No I can’t! Can I prove there is a God? No I can’t! Either place someone finds themselves, whether to disbelieve in a God or to choose to believe, it is a matter of what is not certain.
For me, there have been moments of what I can only state are, “sacred moments.” Standing at the bedside when someone takes their last breathe, I have felt an energy present that charges the room bringing a sense of scared silence. I have seen peace in the midst of sadness and loss. Sacred moments when a child is born and the mother or father holds that child for the first time, can you put into words what that feeling is? Can that be described? I mean even the word love sounds flat when you use it to describe such moments. Have you ever seen that water fall or sunrise that just feels so amazing that it catches you off guard or even causes a slight gasp? It is these “sacred moments” that keep me hoping for more. These are the moments that lead me past the places where my senses fail me. Can I prove to you where those moments come from? No, I cannot, but I can tell you that there was a feeling that cannot be described and it certainly cannot be tested or easily reproduced.
I remember as a child I traveled with a group of friends to a lake and there was this huge (well at the time to my 8 year old judgment it seemed huge) high dive. I remember watching people scale the heights and take the plunge. Soon enough I found myself wanting that experience too. So I climbed what seemed to be a ladder to the stars! I walked to the edge of the diving board and looked down…I was terrified! All of my logic said turn around climb back down!! Climb down the ladder go back to what is known and safe and makes sense! Go back to the ground you felt with your bare feet, where it is solid and safe. Then there was this part of me that said “Jump!” It wasn’t audible but it was a feeling, even at 8 years old I felt that if I didn’t jump I was going to miss out on something special. If I didn’t jump I would regret it. Not sure exactly what brewed inside of me but that feeling gave me just what I needed to take a deep breath and fall. It felt as if I fell from the clouds and the feeling was terrifying yet so exhilarating that I couldn’t help but giggle and scream! It was a risk, a risk of fear, a risk to defy what seemed logical, but a risk I have never regretted taking. But there I go again, trying to use language to describe something indescribable….