I can trend in the direction of cynicism. There are all sorts of reasons to be skeptical,
to be aloof,
to stay removed,
and to avoid getting to emotionally attached to anything.
The world works against joy:
trains don’t arrive on time
and people cut you off
and employees at businesses treat you poorly and have bad attitudes
and other people talk smack about “those” people
and your neighbors are annoying
and your co-workers are frustrating
and I’m just getting started.
I could go on.
But there is a better way to live. Cynicism is just too easy.
My daughter consistently reminds me that the world is actually an amazing and endlessly fascinating place.
There are so many things to see
This weekend we discovered the joy of splashing in the bath.
Such a simple joy. Just flailing arms
and water all over the floor
It was beautiful.
There are so many things to wonder at.
Sunsets and sunrises.
A good meal.
Sitting around and talking
I could go on.
Here’s to the simple joy of splashing in the bath.
I think that if you do life right you spend your first 25 years accumulating layers, the next 25 peeling those layers away, and the last however many years you live just letting it all hang out.
This is an oversimplification, but I do think the central idea is true: maturity is all about delayering.
Maybe another way of putting it is this: I think we equate maturity with more…more patience, more kindness, more joy, more love.
But I would argue maturity is about less busyness, less attatchment to things, less clutter (physically and spiritually).
I can sense already some push back to this “negative” stance (sounds too buddhist!). But I think scripture supports this (for example and foranother) and I know my experience certainly does.
The delayering for me began with marriage (in my humble opinion it has to start here, if it hasn’t already, or you are in for a short marriage). Then it became vocational. Then it started to affect the way i dress, which is pretty superficial…
…but I can feel it getting deeper and deeper. Soul delayering. I know that I am in the middle of a moment of significance in my story but I can’t put my finger on what that means quite yet. I do know that it feels like getting rid of layers. That I am identifying less and less with external sub-cultures and other markers, and more and more with inner convictions.