There is a mystical line from William Blake that Thomas Merton quotes ‘we are put on earth for a little space that we may learn to bear the beams of love’.
That line has captivated me for years. So often I hear people asking what their purpose in life is and Blake speaks of it so clearly: we are to bear the beams of love. No one with any serious life experiences would take that definition lightly. Today a man came into Eremos saying he knew something was changing or shifting within him. It wasn’t just a physical or emotional or even financial shift going on (although all of those were going on in him). He knew it was something more and that more was impacting his life but he didn’t know how to deal with it. Ah yes, bearing the beams of love.
Our culture doesn’t have a language at its fingertips to talk about bearing the beams of love. Yet I hear it over and over each day as people are invited to be changed by Love within their lives. Another woman cried saying she didn’t believe in a Savior or Power greater than she is. Her life was in turmoil and there was no rudder to help hold her in place. What an awesome experience of the beam of Love calling her into a faith she did not know how to bear. And still another person faces a journey through death and cries out ‘teach me to pray’ and my heart says ‘yes, we learn to bear Love’s beams’.
It may sound like Love punishes, but it is the total opposite. It is Love that sustains us in and through all that life presents.
As you encounter your beams of Love this summer, please know you are being transformed into the image and likeness of God. It is a journey through faith and hope into Love.