Talking it over with the Boss
I am reading George Herbert’s poem ‘Love bade me welcome’ it was the chosen poem by Paul for the group to contemplate over two weeks.
What do you think of it?
“I think Herbert experienced something of love that he expressed in this poem however it is for everyone to express their own experience.”
“How do you express your experience?”
You know like how I am right now, I like to write. I mean we have these conversations just sometimes I like to write them.
Mark was asking me what I thought theologically of a friend of his musings. I listened for about 15 minutes. The guy sounds fine, he talking about roundabouts as a metaphor for dealing with the issue of sexuality within the church but he is taking as long to talk about it as it is to get around that roundabout.
My thoughts are that just as the world has had to deal with previous issues such as enslavement, women’s rights so too has the church and now it needs to get its head around what is an acceptable Christian expression of sexuality, what it approves and what it doesn't. It will get to a place where it doesn't matter so much it is just a question of when.
As you know I don't really do theology much since I had that experience with you. I know you remember but I will say it anyway because I like remembering it. You remember that day in St Alban's library, what was it 13 years ago in 2008?
I had spent 9 months doing ‘The Retreat in Daily Life’ which meant I was much more disciplined in stopping to chat with you. You had me for at least 1/2 an hour a day and sometimes more, yes sometimes less when I got distracted. But anyway that discipline of spending time not really talking but just being with you and contemplating some of the so-called best writing about you brought me to that moment in the library.
I was working on a computer as I am now and I was probably also writing about my experience of my contemplation when I remember looking up I guess towards the ceiling and having this moment of feeling one with you. I mean it wasn't a quick moment it lasted for months and maybe even now there are some vestiges remaining (who uses the word vestiges when talking to a friend?).
So I had read about you since I could read, I heard about you from many, I had my own relationship with you but in that moment all that had gone before was like a stairwell that fell away.
I was in you and you were in me and what's more you and I were in absolutely everything. I mean the whole world, everything that was made. There was no separation and the sense that I had was that it was love. You, me and everything was love and we were one and the same. Theology fell away with the stairwell.
Like if love was a heartbeat there was no division the only thing I could do was love and I mean love everyone. When I saw it I knew I was seeing through you that not one person was separate from you and never would be. I guess that is why theology fell away.
Did we institutionalise everything including you? Saying to be part of this group you have to……
Love is boundless, it does not begin nor end it is ‘ever’ so there is no getting your head round because love is present, it didn't start and stop. All people are loved and maybe love?