Elastic heart

“It’s all a little bit too dramatic. I don’t like drama”, said the teenage boy who just joined a community.

I don’t really love drama either, but I’ve come to notice that in trying to love a person, and in a community setting especially, it’s just part and parcel of the experience. Why can’t we just can’t calm down, rationally talk about it and then make the appropriate steps to move forward?

Why God? Why do you create emotions and make people so difficult to love? It doesn’t make sense.

One thing I’ve learnt from Magis/Jesuits in 2011 is the importance of feelings. That regardless of how annoying they are, they tell a story. When you dig deep into it, it’s really a source of self discovery because it truly and honestly reveals the innermost desires. Then we can do all the AAR, next-steps kinda thing.

Recently, in the adoration room, I sat there feeling so worn out. As I was explaining to a friend, I felt like I am standing perfectly fine but there is some hurricane going on around me and I’m just… standing there, sometimes fighting it, sometimes keeping silent, sometimes trying to stop it…

Then it’s one of those moments you know that “God called me to be here”. A girl of about 4 years old was sitting in the adoration room with her family with the paper prayer to St Jude Thaddeus. She walked resolutely towards Jesus then plopped herself down on her knees. “That’s nice” I said in my head, thinking that maybe God was saying that I have to be like a child and just be present in simplicity.

Then she crawled forward and like a cat stretching it’s hind legs, or a yoga pose maybe, but she creeped forward with less perfection. If I were her parent, in a room with at least 8 other people, I would have gone up to her and dragged her to my side asking her to stay put and be quiet. It is normal protocol with my niece.

But a woman, I assume is her mother/aunt, knelt next to her and asked her if she wanted to pray the prayer to St. Jude. “Oh”, I sighed and bowed my head, maybe that’s how I’m called to bring love to people.

There is a Sia song that has stirred up quite a lot of controversy lately for it’s artistic visual interpretation but she’s a songwriter so I take that her lyrics aren’t just put together because they sound logical/rhyme. It’s titled ‘Elastic heart’:

“I’ve got thick skin and an elastic heart 
But your blade it might be too sharp 
I’m like a rubberband until you pull too hard 
I may snap and I move fast 
But you won’t see me fall apart 
‘Cos I’ve got an elastic heart”

Somehow the idea of elasticity has really resonated with my over the weekend. Where I feel like my heart was stretched beyond what it was used to. I (almost literally) felt breathless and worn, like a rubberband that was stretched then released such that it all snapped back together. Painful, but together.

Indeed a lot of times we will be called to love deeper and embrace the drama of meeting people where they are. When you step into a person’s world and try to find the beautiful flower among the thorns. To make them believe that they are indeed, amazing.

I really don’t need the drama, but the heart aches, and the heart gets stretched, and trying to love seems to be exactly what I’m suppose to do. After all, that’s what has been done for me.

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