February 9, 2006

…listened to George Harrison’s All Things Must Pass on the way to work this morning and, while listening to his beautiful song “I Live For You”, was struck by just how much the lyrics seem reflective of my own relationship with God, those I love, and the world I find myself a part of at this time:

All alone in this world am I
Not a care for this world have I
Only you keep my eyes open wide
Yes it’s true
I live for you

Not a thing in this world do I own
Only sadness from all that is grown
In this darkness I wait for the day
Yes it’s true
I live for you

For many years I wait
For many tears I wait

All this time my thoughts return to you
Give my love that is all I can do
Wait in line till I feel you inside
Yes it’s true
I live for you

For many years I wait
For many tears I wait

If indeed the “you” in Harrison’s lyric is God (which, from his other writings at the time, I believe to be so), the aching sense of desire, longing, sadness, and frustration he expresses are so real, and so heartfelt, that I find myself strangely comforted to know that my own place and time with God and the world I live in is something that can be so articulated for me and thus shared with it.

The contradictions of longing and desire to feel God’s Presence and the sober realization that patience and trust in God’s will and intentions are what is needed most during times of trial are classic in the writings of Christian mystics and writers, two fine examples being St. John of the Cross’ Dark Night of the Soul and Thomas Green’s When the Well Runs Dry. These works are not simply based on psychology and human experience – after all, throughout the Old and New Testaments the same expressions sung by Harrison abound (the Psalms, and Jesus’ expression of abandonment on the Cross, to name two) to help us understand that part of being human will always result in times when God seems very far away and, hopefully, those times when God feels very close. Both Mother Teresa and Mother Angelica – no spiritual and mystical slouches, they – experienced periods of a sense of abandonment often in their lives and referred to them as a form of purification, believing that such times can be a healthy thing if it means replacing our innocent perceptions of God and the way His Church functions on earth with a healthy, sober realism that we are all sinners striving for perfection, completion, and a true peace and happiness that is unattainable in this life, yet promised to us in the next by God if we are willing to empty ourselves before Him and humbly serve Him in our time on this earth.

Spiritually, the last five years for me have been filled with an almost-suffocating darkness and emptiness following my bitter experiences with the Episcopal Church in Kentucky, and it is only recently that I have the slightest hint that this period of trial may be finally beginning to lift. Harrison’s words in “I Live For You”, then, provide a source of hope for me and, I hope, those like me in a similar place. Thanks, George, for the lift – may God have mercy on your soul and all of us in this life trying to live their lives for “You”.

Filed in: Religion & Culture by The Great White Shank at 10:39 | Comments (2)
  1. […] Earlier tonight, for no reason whatsoever, I was looking at some of the posts I had put up in this space last year at this time, and was amazed to see how absolutely lost, and how imprisoned spiritually, I felt back then. […]

    Pingback by GoodBoys Nation - Archives » Real Love — March 31, 2007 @ 9:35 am

  2. […] Back to “All Things Must Pass” for a second – I remember this post from way back when I first started this weblog. Considering I wrote this before my spritual re-awakening of the past year, all I can say is the Holy Spirit had to have been planting seeds I simply could not foresee at that time working the harvest with. But that’s why they say that, no matter how hopeless and daunting things might seem, with God all things are possible. When I wrote that post, I was absolute choked by the darkness surrounding me. I remember it, and believe me – it was real. And something I’d rather not experience again. God be praised. […]

    Pingback by GoodBoys Nation - Archives » In The Pool — July 24, 2008 @ 10:31 pm

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