Wednesday, October 6, 2010

The Inner Voice of Love

I've been reading a page out of Henri Nouwen's The Inner Voice of Love every morning recently.  It's a public record of the journal he kept while dealing with depression and abandonment issues.  It's pretty intense. Here are some words that struck me last week, words that seem to fly in the face of our culture that invites us to "share" so much of ourselves:

Do not tell everyone your story. You will only end up feeling more rejected. People cannot give you what you long for in your heart. The more you expect from people's response to your experience of abandonment, the more you will feel exposed to ridicule. You have to close yourself to the outside world so you can enter your own heart and the heart of God through your pain. God will send to you the people with whom you can share your anguish, who can lead you closer to the true source of love.

I think what he means by "close yourself to the outside world" (a phrase which I don't really like) is not to rely on other people to take away your pain, because they don't have the power to do so.  Only God can do that. But God will give us one or two trusted people who will sit with us in our pain and remind us that only God can fully heal.

What's your response to that quote?  Is there an invitation for you in it?