O Lord, you are so good to the soul who seeks you, what must you be to the one who finds you?
–Bernard of Clairvoux
I read this quote and want to sink into both phrases. If I count the ways God has been good to me in the seeking, more pictures come than words. Times of Jesus coming toward me when I didn’t deserve it. Provisions far beyond my control. A meeting of “me” way down deep where words fail, but recognition and knowing don’t. The uncovering of desires that both delight and scare me to death. All this and more have come in the seeking of Him.
Immersing into the second phrase, all eloquence fails. Only single-word answers pop into my head. ”Everything!” I’m so caught in what I don’t know that I can’t describe it. To truly answer this, I’d have to know much more of God. But the knowing is beyond what I can know now. Like asking a blind person to describe green, or music to someone deaf, I only know there is more, much more, to encounter, experience, get caught up in, and for which to hunger.
But I feel a response to the second phrase. Having been “met”, cared for, fought for…loved, I feel a great love for Jesus well up in me. The kind that leads to surrender, acceptance; anything really if it means I get to have Him. The truth of this echoes way down into the place where words falter; resonating and bringing so much of my being together. It evokes gratitude in waves. And something settles, not in question anymore.
Was this what Mary felt when she looked in Jesus’ face? Was this what Joseph felt as he secured all the necessary supplies they needed? Did that night mark the shepherds for life? Did the wise men find all they came seeking? Did the wonder of that night and all it meant, touch them, awaken them to a hunger…a seeking that led them to be found?
Perhaps that is a missing word here – found. It’s a word that brings pictures…of belonging, of joy, of receiving back and restoring what was lost. It’s a word that lets us know we’re home. And that’s the grand invitation, to make our home in God, to live in Him, with Him, so closely that we begin to get a very faint picture of what the color “green” might look like to a blind person, or music to one born deaf. And then we chuckle, realizing that no matter how good, how wonderful, how absolutely moving we may experience the love of God here on earth, it will be nothing like the wonder we will feel when we finally see Him face to face.
But in the meantime, we can sink into…immerse into the places where words fail, but recognition (I know the One whom my soul loves) and knowing leads us to a deeper communion…a deeper love with Jesus.
ACTION: What comes when you sink into those two phrases?