Wednesday, March 12, 2008

Will You Keep It Intact?

Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact you must give it to no one, not even an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements. Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket -- safe, dark, motionless airless -- it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.
~ C. S. Lewis

Have you ever had a recurring dream? Not a once-or-twice dream, but one that visits your sleep many, many times? I did and it puzzled me. I never considered it a nightmare -- I never lurched upright in bed, shaking, and drenched in a cold sweat. After about the third rerun though, I began to ask myself, What is this about? Perplexed, I would shrug it off during my waking hours.

I am reluctant to write about the details -- they may seem macabre -- stay with me.

The identical dream revisited each night, and in the dream I was in a casket, but I wasn't dead. There was no procession of people filing by my corpse -- no music -- nothing but silence. I was alone. As the dream progressed the lid of the casket would slowly begin to close over me. Night-after-night, like the trailer for a movie, the vision returned. With each recurrence, the lid of the casket would descend closer-and-closer, and the band of light between the walls and cover of the coffin would get thinner-and-thinner. The top never completely sealed shut, and I never felt panic. Then the dream would fade away.

After two weeks the dreams stopped and never returned, but this morning, weeks later, its recollection came back as I followed a trail of C. S. Lewis quotes. Come with me, and I will show where that path ended . . .

Love anything and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken . . . If you want to make sure of keeping it intact . . . Lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket -- safe, dark, motionless airless -- it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. To love is to be vulnerable.

The recall spoke comfort and peace and a message of grace into my heart . . .

Bill, Your heart is not unbreakable, impenetrable, or irredeemable. You are fully alive -- not half dead. You have not selfishly locked your heart away in a coffin of your own making. For you, the adventure is worth the risk. You will remain vulnerable, and willingly release your heart to be wrung out and possibly broken. You will be fine. You are free. The casket is gone.

4 comments:

  1. I am always fascinated by people dreams.When I have recurring dreams I always step back and ask what it is that the Lord is trying to show me.
    To stay vulnerable can be so hard, but so worth the risk!

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  2. We live in a world that is hell-bent to insure risk-free living (invulnerability).

    That is not the life-goal God's people are called to embrace.

    We can play it safe -- but we will never live -- only exist. We have to choose to be vulnerable. Choosing vulnerability invites risk.

    There is no picking and choosing -- it's a package deal!

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  3. this is beautiful writing. i love when people share dreams...good job dad!

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  4. Thank you my beautiful daughter. You are every dad's dream!

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