“There are far, far better things ahead than any we may leave behind.”
I sat with these words for a bit last night as I tried to illustrate them. Over and over, I drew a background that just didn’t fit these simple yet profound words. Over and over, I deleted one layer after another in my procreate app. Finally, I closed the file and just scrolled back through old drawings I had made.
Pretty quickly, my eyes were drawn to this image of a bird clutching a balloon in her beak.
It’s amazing how a simple drawing can have so many different interpretations the more one looks at it, the more one engages with it.
At first glance, the bird looks like she’s just standing still, chilling with the balloon resting in her beak. She’s comfortable, content to be where she is.
On second glance, the balloon looks to be unstable in the grip of her beak… as if the wind might carry it away if she doesn’t tighten her grasp.
On third glance, though, it appears as if she is simply holding the balloon gently, content for as long as it stays in her grasp but okay if it floats away too.
This last glance – this is indifference. Not the general definition of the word but the Ignatian definition. St. Ignatius invited all who engaged with Ignatian Spirituality to practice indifference… the freedom to embrace whatever direction God is pulling you… and the freedom to let go of where God is not.
Indifference is so valuable a practice.
But oh so challenging.
It takes many glances at your life and your situation to get there.
It also takes grace.
A whole lotta grace.
Wherever you are right now, whatever is your balloon (so to speak), I pray that you may have the grace of indifference.
If God is inviting you to hold tight to the balloon a little longer, may you have the grace to do that.
If God is inviting you to sit with the uncertainty of where the balloon may go, may you have the grace to do that.
If God is inviting you to open your grasp and let the balloon fly so that you may be open to receive the next beautiful thing, may you have the grace to do that.
Just know you are not alone in how hard this process can be.
The bird and I understand.