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a-N-x-I-e-T-y

you can’t live without a little of it

stepping into oncoming traffic would be your end

but a plunge into the waters of anxiety

whether for a moment or a long thrashing swim

is anything but pleasant

be not anxious sounds like a plan worth considering

but it is impossible at most levels

we are existentially unmoored at the thought of our own deaths

and when finitude comes knocking who wants to answer the door?

it turns out finitude

is but an intellectual cloak for the more immediate and stomach churning feeling of vulnerability

which rises up out of a jarring realization that control is not in our grasp

looking into that space of profound uncertainty will shake one to the core

but cure . . .

where oh where?

. . . .

in that very same space, it turns out

there may be not just a scream of pain but also a whisper of hope

divine presence like ether fills every space from atom to galaxy

and in the narrow turn between faith and doubt

we must situate our vision

and the small cracks in the sidewalk between your heart and another

are breathing spaces, slivers of silence, creative sparks

for those with ears to hear and eyes to see

in the measured beat between what is and what we  can imagine

is a generative possibility of becoming

love

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This reflection was inspired by a fortnight’s sojourn with seminarians to learn of anxiety, to practice silence, and to consider vocations of care.

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