These past couple of weeks I have not been myself. Mostly, I’ve found that I do not have the passion I usually bring to my work and my family. I get up and go to work, but something is “off.” Those close to me have noticed this and have lovingly kicked, prodded, and pursued to find me: “Where are you in there Jeff?”
Today I realized that the problem is not my lack of “wanting” (Chip Dodd calls this healthy anger) - the admission of which leads to the gift of passion. My lack of anger (as Chip defines anger) is related to my present need to grieve some of the imminent losses of life this side of Genesis ch. 3.
I am grieving many things. I am grieving unmet expectations about life, hopes of an imagined future that have been dashed, last year’s move from Anchorage and the life and the friends I left there. I am grieving the cruelty of time and the entropic effects on everything that matters to me – including me. I am grieving broken relationships that I fear may never fully heal in this lifetime.
I am profoundly sad and in some ways, not sure I can fully comprehend the losses and associated sadness.
Until I will feel and admit the depth of my sadness, the feeling that honors the value of what has been lost, my heart will also not be free to care and to risk the demands of my anger.
Chip Dodd has taught me that the heart is like a house. I must enter through the foyer and exterior rooms to ultimately find myself in the heart of the home. When I refuse to acknowledge my sadness, I close the door to the interior rooms in the house and to the possibilities when a choice few join me in those rooms.
I can’t make myself care about the work on my desk or the people my work privileges me to care about. My passion will only be rekindled as I remain open to the depth of losses in my life and allow my heart to grieve unto life with a God and a few friends who see my tears and share them with me. (Matthew 5:4)