I am not the weather.

God is plotting against me again. A Divine Conspiracy to bring me understanding through a stereo of voices on one topic. Presently the topic is this:

I am not the weather.

The marvelous world of thoughts, sensation, emotions, and inspiration, the spectacular world of creation around us, are all patterns of stunning weather on the holy mountain of God. But we are not the weather. We are the mountain. Weather is happening—delightful sunshine, dull sky, or destructive storm—this is undeniable. But if we think we are the weather happening on Mount Zion…then the fundamental truth of our union with God remains obscured and our sense of painful alienation heightened. When the mind is brought to stillness we see that we are the mountain and not the changing patterns of weather appearing on the mountain. We are the awareness in which thoughts and feelings (what we take to be ourselves) appear like so much weather on Mount Zion.

~Martin Laird, Into the Silent Land

When someone I Love is hurting, I feel responsible…for causing it…for fixing it.
When there is chaos around me, I become the chaos.
If people think well of me, I am ok.
If they are angry at me, I am not.

I am the weather.

In our candlelight Liturgy for the Feast of Epiphany, Father Stephen spoke of the light of Christ that illumines all and enables us to see ourselves as we really are. As He sees us.

As…a mountain?

Then, this morning, this:

Repentance is a great understanding. ~The Shepherd of Hermas

To repent is to look, not downward at my own shortcomings, but upward at God’s love; not backward with self-reproach, but forward with truthfulness. It is to see, not what I have failed to be, but what by the grace of Christ I can yet become.

~Metropolitan Kallistos Ware, The Inner Kingdom

I see.

So….

If it rains, I will be wet. But I am not the rain. If those I love are hurting, I can comfort and care for them without owning their pain.

When a blizzard howls and rages around me, I will suffer the cold of it. But I am not the blizzard. When chaos reigns around me, I need not contribute to it. I can be the still point. Unshakeable.

When warm sunshine and sultry breezes caress me, I can rejoice in their warmth. But I am not the sunshine. When people think well of me, I will give thanks. But I will not covet their praise.

Hail storms may pummel me and pock mark my surface, but I am not the hail. Unkind words pierce like arrows, but they are not the truest thing about me. At least, not the only true thing.

Mudslides might mar me, but I am not the mud. I will sin. I will fail. Over and over again. But I am not the sin. Repentance will heal me and wash me and make me new.

I am not the weather.

Neither are you.

Whoever trusts in the Lord is like Mount Zion: Unshakeable, it stands forever. ~Psalm 125:1