Saturday, September 29, 2007

Pray for us, Saint Meriadoc!

The word “cloister” comes from the Latin claudere, meaning “to shut up.” The English pun is delightful, and my vices of arrogance and narcissism often need to be treated with equal dosages of inactivity and silence.

The posture of waiting is fundamentally Christian and excruciatingly difficult, which, according to Henri Nouwen, makes it “an enormously radical attitude toward life.” If the Bible says anything sure about the experience of being the people of God, it says it will involve a lot of waiting: waiting for a son, waiting for deliverance from slavery, waiting for an end of exile, waiting for a Savoir, waiting for his resurrection, waiting for his return. We would do well to learn the posture. As we exercise those Christian muscles, we would do well to listen.

Saint Meriadoc is (among a handful of others) the patron saint of deafness. This blog is named for him (and if you can help me think of a way to relate it to Tolkien’s character as well I would certainly be delighted). But since the saint whose patronage I invoke also has a name that lends itself to puns, let it serve as a challenge to learn how waiting and listening in a worldview of redemption lend themselves to joy, a fruit of the spirit listed right alongside patience.

So you may astutely ask, “How do you intend to blog listening?” I suppose my success or failure will be linked to how well I practice the discipline in my life. I plan on using this as a space to write down what I hear as I listen with my ears, with my eyes, or with my books. Creating the blog is a commitment to become more intentional in my listening. I pray I learn the posture well.

1 comment:

Audrey E. Wiggs said...

Em, I am proud of you and inspired by your humility. You do write well. That coupled with humility is a powerful tool. I love you. Take care.