I was at the most beautiful wedding I've ever been to this past weekend... and I was only invited to the reception, lol. The best man quoted the poet Rilke - "I would be with those who know secrets... or else alone." That struck so far home with me I was nearly winded. I posted on Facebook, "I would be with those who set my heart and soul on fire... or else alone. For I can tend my own fire if I must, but who can revive a flame once doused?"
You might think I'm talking about Christians versus non-Christians... but you'd be wrong.
I wandered around the grounds of the wedding site half expecting a fairy to flitter out of the brush. It was so beautiful, so magical. There was a peace, a love, a joy in the air that overwhelmed you when you stepped on the property and lingered after you left. It was just GOOD. The whole thing was just so GOOD.
And due to the convictions of those married, none of the proceedings had anything to do with a love for God, or even a belief that He exists. Because they don't.
There are those who have secrets. Who understand freedom. Who have love and joy and peace in abundance. Who revel in their ability to think. People with depth. Who are not shackled by tradition and expectations and hypocrisy and duties and habit. Who have learned how to live. Really LIVE. And I HAVE to believe that some of them might be fellow Christians. There MUST be some out there who can fan my flame rather than watch it grow cold by heaping bonds upon it.
But even if you know secrets, you cannot share them. No one can come to know them who hasn't first found his own way. And to describe them, you sound like a mysticist or else just plain stupid - your listeners would reject, commit, or excommunicate you.
My thoughts are scattered tonight. I just spent less than three hours with one such fellow Christian who can fan the flame - an old friend who can usually only spare a couple hours every couple of months - and I would liken it to the first fresh breath after months of living in dank, undersized confinement, only to be placed back under lock and key when you part ways. My captor? The rain that falls on my embers? "Fellowship." I feel suffocated, starved for fellowship of the other kind. The kind that sets me on fire. The kind that looks for truth in inconvenient places and passionately loves the world and all who live in it. The kind that looks in awe at the expanse of a mountain range and the complexity of a blade of grass, who loves those who worship a God greater than they but call Him by a different name, who pursues wisdom like the very air we breathe.
God, don't make me fight alone forever....