Last night we watched the movie “The Letters,” the story of Mother Teresa. She reminds me so much of St. Francis of Assis. I love them both for the simplicity of their faith, yet how true to God they were in their calling. They were both rebels in a way listening to the voice of God above all else.
The letters tell how lonely and abandon she felt at times by God. I wonder how someone, as holy as Mother Teresa devoting her life and work to God, could feel so alone in what she was doing. In a way it makes me sad. However, I understand too because I have felt the same way at different points in my own faith walk.
She had so many people around her who admired her and wanted to emulate her. Yet she never wanted the focus to be on her. Nothing was more important than the present moment in which she could be helping the needy. She had no time for the praises of this world. She points the way to God through her actions, the same as Jesus did.
There is something in her story that we can all gain insight from. The part of the story that jumped out for me was when she told a reporter she was an instrument to God the same as his pencil was to his writing. It made me think of the different talents we each have and how we can use them for the betterment of the world. She once said, “not all of us can do great things, but we can do small things with great love.” As a writer, I take to heart her example of the pencil as my instrument, but it is my hand that moves it, my thoughts that create it, and the spirit of God who inspires what I write. The trick is in not letting my own thoughts get in the way. As Mother Teresa encouraged everyone, she’d simple say with clasped hands and smile on her face, “pray, pray, pray.”
“From Muddied Waters to Clarity”
When our thoughts become stirred like muddy water, there can be no clarity in our mind. When we allow the mud to settle in the stillness, the water of our thoughts become clear.
I’ve been busy working on my memoir. When the new year came I made a commitment to myself that this would be the year I’d finally finish my story. I’m not getting any younger and there’s this overwhelming feeling that I have to hurry. Oy Vey! At the end of the day I feel like I’ve been trudging through water stirring up a lot of mud along the way, clouding my clarity and sense of direction. I’m motivated, excited and eager to move on, but I need some time out to let my muddy thoughts settle to that I can find clarity once again.
So I’m taken a break. I’ve gotten out of the house, and away from my office. As I write this I am sitting in a room with a view overlooking the Niagara Falls right outside my window. It is stillness in motion, and yet with the power and force of the the overflowing water you don’t see mud only the beauty of its magnificence. Isn’t it ironic that my treading through muddy water should bring me to this place of awakening where the real power flows from the Great Lakes of running together as one, and overflowing into a majestic collection of power and beauty for all to see. My peaceful journey into stillness has brought the clarity I needed into view. I know now that if I find myself creating to many muddy thoughts that I need to step back until my thoughts are able to come together and overflow into one even motion moving in the same direction and purpose.
Baring our soul for others to see that’s what passionate artists do. We put ourselves in vulnerable situations because what’s inside us needs to come out and be expressed. We want to be the best by the worlds standards, but lose sight of the fact that we are already the best we can be when we remain true to ourselves. Some of us are not meant to be at the top, but that doesn’t mean we’re any less talented. It’s all about connecting and touching the hearts of those who resonate with the talent we have to offer. Making a personal connection with another human being is like reaching out and touching one heart with another.