Sometimes I worry about this task I have taken on, wanting to say something every day that will be useful to at least one of the people who reads my words. Then I think of that phrase: my words. They are never just mine—these words that come to me sometimes with little or no effort, and sometimes as if I were a woman in labor, seeming to push each one out with a mighty force, in order to convey a thought, a feeling or an image. I know I can never adequately express the effect that the sun has on the mountain outside my window, especially on a frigid day like today when some of the frozen trees create a zigzag path to the top that only a nimble giant would attempt to scale.
Today, on the feast that notes the conversion of St Paul, I wonder how he felt when trying to express his experience of the light that changed his life that day on the road to Damascus…or on any day that followed. There are lines in the Scriptures that can touch our hearts with a power that we cannot understand but only recognize. There are poems that take our breath away and lines that when put to music move our bodies even without our consent because they cause such a stirring in our souls.
So today I celebrate those women and men down through the ages who have given us the gift of language and the facility to make words do for us what we cannot do ourselves to express and praise and love and explain ourselves—especially to the One in whom we live and move and have our being. (Acts of the Apostles: 17:22-28)