This week my ponderings turned toward the subject of... passion... that God-given passion which burns within us... that which becomes what we were meant to do with our life.
My mind was on passion already, this being "Passion Week" and all... we know what the passion of the Messiah was... the redemption of the human race. How amazing is the thought that God would enter the world as His own creation to be the sacrificial Lamb. I often think of one of my favorite children's books at this time of year... The Lion, The Witch, and The Wardrobe. You know, that scene where Aslan comes back to life and informs us about the "Deeper magic before the dawn of time".
I don't have a problem with Easter baskets, bunnies, coloring eggs, new clothes, and other traditions some would call "pagan". Way back in centuries past they certainly did belong to such roots. However, in my home they were just extra curricular activities that caused smiles and giggles. For we were all aware of the Deeper Magic... Narnia magic... Christ breaking free from Death and taking back the Keys to the Kingdom. Now that is PASSION!
My thoughts were also on the subject of one's life passion this week. Those things that cause our heart to flutter just a wee bit more, that which brings a smile to our face, the "work" which may be extremely difficult but so rewarding because of our love for it.
The first conversation regarding "passion" was with my son over lunch this week. He has been struggling with life choices regarding University and career, not to mention deep questions about Theology and the Church. We both knew we needed time for a chat so he suggested buying me lunch at our favorite cafeteria. The place that has been a family favorite since I was quite young. It serves comfort food cafeteria style but the surroundings remind me of the most elegant hotel restaurant.
As we were talking, he was wondering if he would stick with the path he has chosen once he enters the University. It would mean a possible five year commitment to a double major and a demanding course of study. He also wasn't getting a lot of support from Christian friends since one of those majors included Environmental Science. I obviously had covered this conversation with prayer before hand, asking God for wisdom. What came to my mind was the idea of God-given passion.
I had him think of the guitar in his room, the one he hasn't picked up much since he received it for Christmas years ago. He keeps it because he knows he is going to take lessons... someday. I reminded him about his friend, John. That he would have it mastered by now and would have a notebook full of songs he had written. John decided not to attend college and he currently plays his music on small stages and in coffeehouses throughout the Midwest. John has a passion for music.
Christopher has a passion for the environment, for architecture, for design, and for technology and computers (although he says he doesn't want to make a living with computers alone). He watches shows like The History of Cement. He's the only kid I personally know (he has many friends online who have done the same thing) that used allowance money to purchase a huge book to teach himself C++ in his Jr. High years. (He also loves history and literature but not so much as a profession.)
When it came down to a decision, I told him to follow his passion... that which will provide a lifetime of interest. We're still not certain if this is the path that will be the best. It's a long and expensive commitment... five years of college (on top of the credits which will transfer from finishing his high school years at the community college). However, we will take it one step at a time.
The other conversation I had this week which made me think of passion for one's calling... a phone call from my daughter while she was in the van travelling to set up the surprise baby shower for her best friend. (This is her best friend's sixth baby and -- I think -- fifth son, as I told Stephanie... that woman needs a party!)
I answerd my cell phone and heard these words, "Decorating is better than drugs!". I asked her to repeat what she said and yes, I did hear it correctly. (Her brother told me later to ask her how she knows, hehehe.) I knew she had been spending a lot of time and energy preparing for this day but rather than cause her to become tired, she was very energized.
This is what she loves to do. It was that passion that caused her to stay four years with an extremely demanding Interior Design curriculum at the University (it is one of the curricula which feeds into a Master's of Architecture at one of the other colleges in the State). I haven't called back to see how the party went but it had to be wonderful. At least it looked great and she was taking with her Sheila's cake so the food would be good. :)
I know she also has a passion for homemaking, being a good wife and mommy, as well as a love of literature. But this weekend it was that passion for "decorating" that brought a smile to her face... and by using that passion, she was able to provide a background which brought joy to others.
I've mentioned before the small three-shelf bookcase in my bedroom. It holds a mixture of my favorite books, many being titles about decorating, homemaking, and tea time. Other shelves in my home would show my passions past and present... history, gardening, classic literature, biography, homeschooling, and conservative politics... which was a huge passion at one time but one which I've turned the baton over to others with more... energy!
It was former first lady Lady Bird Johnson who often remarked that one should, "Do that which makes their heart sing". I agree... for sometimes it is the process of finding that passion that draws us closer to Him who plants the seed in our heart.
Now, I am off to brew some tea... curl up on the sofa with a throw over me... and follow my passions.... tea, a good book, my "fluffy" Sasha kitty, and paper to plan this week's To Do list. :)