Demanding life

At the same time, embracing one’s wholeness makes life more demanding — because once you do that, you must live your whole life.
Parker J. Palmer, Let Your Life Speak p71

After weeks of acedia, and weeks of openness, this is Week 2 of day compression. I have six “did it!” bubbles filled in, where a real day is five and you don’t have to hit all five. (Yesterday was six as well.) I wasn’t still much, and I don’t intend to spend time to reflect at this point in the evening…

[ I almost said time to ponder, and that reminded me how I wanted to talk about the terrific five-part keynote address from last week’s conference, but maybe later? ]

…so I shuffled around some digital post-its and saw this quote.

It makes for a nifty bi-layered thought:

  • To be whole is, in part, to demand the life God intended for you. No longer interested in settling, not willing to accept half-assed. What’s that meme? “Ain’t nobody got TIME for that!”
  • It is hard work, spiritually demanding, to steadily monitor the pieces of one’s life as it unfolds before you, ensuring that its components are the most-you the moment can support. “Constant vigilance!” as Mad-Eye Moody (out of the Harry Potter series) would say.

I believe my teenaged suicide gesture, and the hospital time following it, stripped me down to wholeness early. Tonight I’m too tired to assess whether I was any good at living a whole life at 18, or if age brought depth, wisdom, and therefore some skill to living life wholly.

But I certainly feel the weight of the demands wholeness makes. The pressure I put on myself to live this open, poet life well? Straight from there. I am God’s; God deserves and requires my best.

Oh, look: 9:30pm! Ding!

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