So Sad…

Reading: Matthew 5:1-11

The deeper that sorrow carves into your being,

the more joy you can contain.

Kahlil Gibran

[Daily Peace, Washington, D.C.: National Geographic Society, 2015, Feb. 23]

Sorrow is my recognition that whatever is absent from my life has left an impression behind, an almost physical cavity that will be filled by something; it could be joy, but it might be something else.

In The Book of Joy, the Dalai Lama talks about sadness as a part of life that can lead to a deeper life or a lesser life:

Focus only on the Self:

If your focus while grieving remains mostly on yourself – ‘What am I going to do now? How can I cope?’ – then there is a greater danger of going down the path of despair and depression.

Focus moving beyond the Self:

With the great sadness of the loss, one can live an even more meaningful life.

[the Dalai Lama and Desmond Tutu with Douglas Abrams, The Book of Joy, New York: Avery, 2016, p.112]

Sorrow brings blessings, but only if I don’t cut myself off from the rest of the world. Recognize the loss, accept the sorrow, allow it to soften me, and remain part of the life around me.

Blessed are those who mourn…blessed are you and I when we mourn.

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I am a Christian educator and writer.I have worked in churches, denominational offices, and seminaries. I have a PhD in Theology from Princeton Theological Seminary, with a focus on Practical Theology and educating in faith. In 2010, my book, "How the Other Half Lives: the challenges facing clergy spouses and partners," was published by Pilgrim Press. I believe that words can build doorways that lead to encounters with God through the Spirit.

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