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“For the listener, who listens in the snow, and, nothing himself, beholds nothing that is not there and nothing that is,” she quoted from Wallace Stevens.
Kerri, another High Calling blogger, was considering this verse even as she was considering the snow outside her door. Nothing, nothing, nothing, she noticed. Thrice used in the poem was the word “nothing.”
“Nothing” was significant, she realized. She felt insignificant.
It was the snow. Snow that levels off rough edges and smooths over blemishes. Snow that falls equally over the rich and the poor, the good and the evil. Snow falling down without respect for persons was making her feel insignificant.
Sometimes, I feel that way, too, in the haunting, blue quiet of snow. It makes me want to shout out, “I’m here!” into the silence that doesn’t seem to care that I am. And like Kerri, I find myself shouting out into lots of silences, trying to make those spaces about me, trying not to be the “nothing” that I am.
Several years ago, I was attending a new church, trying to make new friends, and there was one particular woman I found myself connecting with. After a few weeks of attending the same Bible study and socializing with a common group of friends, she pulled me aside and said she needed to talk to me. She asked me to meet her for dinner the following week.
During those days in between, I rehearsed every thing I had said to her, all of the interactions we had had, assuming I must had done something or said something that offended her that she needed to confront me about. When I couldn’t come up with anything, I determined that she probably wanted my advice or to ask my opinion.
Somehow, in my extreme egotism, I has assumed she wanted to talk to me about me.
When we actually met, I was relieved to know that I had done nothing wrong. My new friend simply wanted to tell me about a situation in her life that was difficult, that she needed me to pray about.
But I was horrified to realize that I could turn absolutely any situation into an opportunity to think about myself.
What started as a snowy day ended with an opportunity for worship for Kerri, as she considered the thrice-holy Someone who died for all the thrice-nothing No ones.
And then the snow started falling here, too. And after reading her words, I understood anew how significant my “nothing” is in the hands of my Savior.
Oh, for a fortnight of snowy days.
Join me for regular jaunts around The High Calling network, randomly visiting fellow bloggers, soaking up their words and ideas, and then coming back here to write about them from my perspective. This is what The High Calling network is all about, after all.