When I was a little girl, around nine years old, I would lie in my bed at night and think about the world around me--how everything moved and worked together and what started it all. I knew to see the truth, I would have to take away the most recent things. First, I would take away the people and the animals and the trees and flowers and then the Earth itself would be gone. Then I would tackle the sun, moon and stars and all the planets--everything I could imagine. But there was more. I knew there was more--something or someone behind it all. So I had to take away the universe. What was left?
I had to bring it down to one thing--one throbbing, living, Thing. And in my mind all that would be left was One who began everything and I knew it then. It was God.
Now, at the age of fifty-five, I look back over the precipice of dangerous memories that comprise my life and pick out the things I don't want to recall, the things I never tell anyone and I weigh them in my spiritual hands as though I could hold the world.
I am ashamed.
I look back, back, back towards the One who I know is there and was there and will always be there and I hold it up to Him.
See what I have done, I say and I hold it up to Him like a menacing jewel. He knows. There is no reason to hide. In all of Your world, I tell Him, this is who I have been.
It is then that I see a part of the One grow closer. Though the One stays the same, the essence of who He is walks towards me.
It is condescending to call Him love when love has become a recycled word yet that is all I can see. The Figure draws closer and I weep as He takes the horrible jewel from my hand.
Into the vapid airlessness of eternity He flings the jewel and I cannot help but laugh as the Sea of Forgetfulness envelopes it forever.
This is joy.