Daydreams no longer bring any comfort, those delicious, warm, golden moments spent imagining, hoping, when the living present was too painful, even unbearable. Daydreams lent strength of some day, some where, some body, some how.
And my visions of God were of a knight in shining armour, or a wizened Gandalf rescuing the suffering from torment, of rescuing me from my own self, from my dark imaginings of my own ugliness and lack of worth. To say this has been pointless would be to discount all the times I know God has been that angel in shining armour that has held a shield of protection against all the dread that might have been, of the myriad times I have timidly stood to voice some wrong, been shamed for my audacity, and brought to a better place in the end for having done so. God has been a knight in shining armour and rescued this poor maid from the worst of fates.
But now in the maturity of life – or maybe a maturity of faith – and unsure I can even call it that, I am wanting more. Amid all the disdain of certain worship songs that portray ‘Jesus as my boyfriend’ – I begin to recognise these songs belie a human longing for connection. Maybe in youthful, Disney innocence, we have depicted some kind of ‘boyfriend’ rescuer that has condemned men to be the expected solver of all that is ill and bringer of joy, and all women as simpering waifs capable of little more than kissing the frog to bring out the prince. We are so much more to one another. God is so much more for us, and we are so much more for God.
Love has entered late in life and wounded me to the core. Longing for connection, for intimacy – something deep that goes beyond rescue, beyond transforming a prince through a kiss. I long now not to be rescued, but to be my own self, with much to offer, however flawed. I am now that cracked bowl mended with molten gold. I have suffered the blows of life and am held together by the people I have loved – many of whom I have lost, through time, or distance, or death.
And yet here I stand, empty. I wait to be filled, filled with the deep draught of rich red wine, dipped with bread. I await the lips that drink from my bowl, that drink the fullness and take all I offer into his body, his soul, his heart. For all we are, all we ever have, is one another, is our connection, our Love.
And should I be blessed to place my lips on that of another cracked bowl, rich with the molten gold of wounds, with the deep red wine of Love freely offered and the bread of a body shared, I would count this a Grace of God, an at-one-ment with the Divine Beloved, an absolution of my fear of the intimacy I so deeply long for.
If this quaff should never be my providence, then the longing must be enough – a proof that Love we all seek is welling from within my heart. It is mine, ready to share, to give, to quench, to sooth, to heal, to increase.
I see God no longer as knight in shining armour, or wizened Gandalf, and was never really that longed-for ‘boyfriend’. God seeks each of us as partner, partner in feeding the hungry, sheltering the homeless, healing the sick, befriending the lonely, partner in Love and in loving. God is with us as we walk through the shadows, and stands with us in the light. God is in each and every person who acts out of love rather than fear, tenderness rather than cruelty, generosity rather than selfishness. God is more and more present when we are together, yet never abandons or disappears when we are at our loneliest. God is in the best of us, and can be found, if looked for, in the worst of us – even when we feel that worst is within our own selves. God is there, patching us up with molten gold, for we are precious in God’s sight.