This afternoon I was journaling after my spiritual direction session and I stumbled upon something: our desires are shaped by our inner realities.
I realized this while processing something I was craving walking into my session. When I left my session the want for it was also gone. So when I sat to write and reflect the change stood out.
When I left my session I also left behind a lot of anxiety, restlessness, and untrue messages I was believing. Curiously, my former desire was no longer present.
My desires were affected by the turmoil in my heart. And manifesting in external wants. In the moment I was not free to want my wants, I was being driven by anxious inner forces masking themselves as desires.
I wonder how often I do this, how often do I want something because of some drive inside me, rather than a pure desire for the thing I think I want?
I left my session feeling full, without need, and satisfied. There was no continuing hunger for what I thought I wanted. And by not acting on my want in the moment I allowed myself to not be driven by anxiety, but gave myself enough time and space to realize I was actually content.
And from freedom I could more clearly see my actual longings: to become who I am in Jesus, to help others along the way as I journey with Jesus, and to learn to care well for myself so I can be and become those things.
Thank you, Jesus. Have mercy on me to slow down and notice when my heart is not as rest in you. Help me to live out of the reality of my relationship with you. Amen.
At the end of my journaling today I had a thought: I become negligent when I carry too much, I carry too much when I carry what's not mine.
I was processing how divided I feel at this point in my journey with how many good things there are to do, to explore, create. How do I decide what to give myself to? And be responsible to my life's needs and commitments at the same time.
As I thought about what I might let go of I wondered, If I let go, am I being irresponsible? That's when the thought that started this post appeared.
It reframed my entire mindset: what's mine is to follow Jesus and be responsible for what he's given me (myself). And a lot falls away when I think of it that way. No surprise that the following quote came to mind earlier this morning. I thought it was for someone else, but in fact it was for me.
The man who is wise, therefore, will see his life as more like a reservoir than a canal. The canal simultaneously pours out what it receives; the reservoir retains the water till it is filled, then discharges the overflow without loss to itself ... Today there are many in the Church who act like canals, the reservoirs are far too rare ... You too must learn to await this fullness before pouring out your gifts, do not try to be more generous than God.
-Bernard of Clairvaux
Jesus, give me the courage to be filled. Grant me the boldness to rest. And out of this refreshment and filling, give me eyes to discern the good before me.