I have heard it said ‘Let them Stay’…. but this is not enough.
I have heard my heart say…Stay with them.
What I know as I have wondered and pondered over these days, there is no answer outside of us. We are the ones they look to. We are their hope. We hold within us the difference they need now. Whoever they are. I say Stay with them. Let us not leave them.
All meditation of presence is nothing if we cannot abide with the other.
All our voice … gestures – empty intoning chants and gongs – if we have not the love to stay and be with those who this day want us to be present to their plight…whatever it is and whoever is present to you this day.
Life is about our action and our witness of how have we stayed present to the other.
How did I build and grow in relationship with the other. Did I go out to the stranger … did I go without those resources they seemed so much to need … empty…
I am not called to go with the answer, I am called to be the answer. My heart and faithfulness to my other self is all that is needed.
I was once in a war zone, and heard and saw the cries of the people. They pleaded with me to tell the world… to tell “America”…they thought if only they “knew”, things would change. Although I felt convicted I needed to make a difference, in being a change agent, all my responses were to me of little comfort or assurance. Although having some capacity; I knew not how. I knew I was bereft and powerless. But I was still open.
When I met with a priest and community elder very early the next morning… he came to me…He put his arm around my shoulder and embraced me gently and simply said…’if they wanted to be here they would be…if X organisations wanted to be here, they would be.’ You are here. Stay now. You are with us … You came to us as you are. This is enough.
I felt Jesus with me in that moment and that assuring touch.
And so Jesus simply says in the face of no answers, in the face of insurmountable obstacles, distress and unfathomable circumstances: “Stay with them…. Go out and meet them. Go out beyond yourself and enter their world. Abide with them.”
They want to be known at heart with you. One with you. Share your bread of life. Share the little you have with them. Go forth. It is enough. You are enough.
Do not lobby and posture on how to let them stay.
You already have the answer. It is a matter of the heart … my heart …
Ephphata be open yourself . You are enough. You can go to them. You can remain in the face of their struggle, with them; present to bear with them. We make space in our hearts to remain with them.
At the heart of the matter in companioning, spiritual direction and counselling, in loving as a Christian and a Jew – is the imperative – go out to the stranger … make a place for them in our heart.
I do not want to be the clanging bell of meditation, but the silent sitting fully present to, and with my other who is seeking me. May I be found fully present to the other.
Be not afraid for we are a small light in the darkness and the darkness will not overcome.
Do not worry who goes with you.
You are not alone.