I don’t often get excited about the words of St Paul, but this phrase really captured my imagination. “God’s love was poured into our hearts.” (Romans 5; 5) The context of the words was the power of hope in the midst of disappointment.
On Sunday I gave a sermon on the connection between receptive emotions like love, joy and wonder, and action. I spoke about a jug; empty, open and ready to be filled. Once the jug has been filled, it’s only natural to share the love. If you have a heart full of love, then pour your love out like a jug of compassion.
The real pearl of wisdom though occurred after the service in a newcomer’s brunch. Several people shared similar stories. They had been laid off in the last month. Instead of becoming discouraged, they were seeing this as an opportunity. They were looking to shift their attention to work that captured more of their vision for the world.
The spiritual truth (and the wisdom of Romans 5) that perceived disappointments are so often new opportunities in disguise was manifesting in these courageous people. It tapped into what for me is part of the wonder of evolution. I don’t always know how or why life is unfolding the way it is, but I can take strength from the fact that it is unfolding. There is always more. Life is packed full of second chances.
At a time when so many of us are craving a new expression of hope, a new form of activism, my hope is that we pause to wonder at our hearts filled with love, and allow this love to cascade out of our hearts with compassion. The power of wonder-filled activism is that your heart always has more love to give.
May all be blessed with moments of love and wonder that take our breath away, and fill our hearts with compassion