When the Cleveland Clinic video started playing, I was beginning to quiver already. A few seconds in, my tears were already coming out. Having just finished a session of conflict resolution and experiencing the great relief which comes with it, my heart was left in a very sensitive place. The sobriety awakened me to the needs of others, awakened me to stop resisting the emotions which were always there.
Because I have to confess I am the emotional creature, the feeler of tension in the room and absorber of joy in the work place. When I am not living with a hard hearted attitude, the concerns and emotions and sadness and anxieties are very evident to me. I can tell when someone was put off or why they smiled in that way. It's the curse of intuition. The mantra of the ENFP. I confess there's a mothering desire inside me which I so often stifle because it's not cool, or it's not convenient, or I'm tired and dwelling in self-pity.
But after having walked through conflict resolution and employing my ears to do that which they are meant for, listening, and then genuinely warmly embracing this brother of mine, I was in a very soft place. And when the video began to play, when the sound track behind brief clips of people doing hospital things like riding an elevator, smiling in an eccentric manner to a child, or contemplating what these result papers mean in the waiting room hit my ears, I knew I was going to cry. As I read the captions besides each subject in the clip, the caption beside the patient, or the radiologist, or the desk attendant, I could feel this deep gut wrenching. In each caption was a worry or concern or reason for joy for that individual and the way the video played out I could just hear the very loud message coming through:
Nobody around them really knows this information which is so heavy on this person's heart. You wouldn't know either if you were a part of their life because, let's be honest, when was the last time you sought out a person to really listen to what's on their heart...
And I cried. I cried bitterly and unashamedly as the whole class watched the four minute video. I let myself feel the weight of the situation and this deep angry repentance rose up in my heart. After my tears, I thought the emotions I experienced had subsided but when the clip ended, Laurence asked me to share what I had felt. And as I walked back to the group from the sound booth where I had been, all the pain, hurt, anger, repentance, longing, and passion roared back to life.
There's so much pain, so much pain, (I am walking towards my seat, circling the class.) so much pain in this world. So much pain in everyone all around me all the time. And I ignore it, I fight it, I resist it, I turn my eyes away from it, I harden my heart and choose to not deal with it. And I hate so much that I am a culprit, sitting on the wealth of gospel and good news that's supposed to bring reconciliation to the world, but I am not doing anything with it. I am approaching my seat at the table now. It makes me want to flip over the tables of my fakery in the way that the Rabbi Jesus did once and just rid myself of all the crap my self-seeking brings. I sit. My head bows down towards the edge of the table. No longer do I yell, this a whimpering plea. It made me long, it made me long so much for Jesus to return, to come soon... and heal... And restore, I thought but didn't manage to whimper out between my falling tears.