COME NOW AND ENTER INTO YOUR REST

Once upon a time there was a man who loved living in his tropical paradise.  Having been born on the island where his parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents had always lived, he held in his heart a special place for the beauty of the palm trees, the white sand, the sloping mountains, the gentle climate.

This man, approaching death, told his loved ones to place some island sand into each of his hands when he died, so that he might hold on to the memory of his beloved place forever.  They did, and so the man proceeded to the gates of heaven still clutching the sand.  At the gate, he was warmly greeted and told that as soon as he emptied his hands of the sand, he could enter into eternal joy.

The man was crushed, for he could not let go of what he loved so much, and so he waited. He waited for a long, long time: so long that at last his hands grew weary and could not longer hold the sand. It eventually slipped through his fingers, lost forever.

At that moment, Jesus came to him, holding the man as he sobbed at the loss of his memory, and said, “Come now and enter into your rest.” With that, Jesus walked with the man through the gates of heaven, where there before them both stretched out the entirety of the man’s beloved island.

Source | as told by Tim Muldoon, The Ignatian Workout
(Loyola Press, 2004) page 5

CONSIDER THIS

  • What are you holding on to that’s preventing  you from turning your life over to Life?
  • What is the “handful of sand” that you are still clinging to, blinding you to the amazing, expansive beauty of the whole beach?

DESERT OR BEACH?

Did you hear about the guy from Brooklyn who was in the Sahara Desert in swimming trunks, for heaven’s sake, and a towel?  Walking in the Sahara Desert, he meets an Arab, and he says, “Hi.”  And the Arab says, “Hi.”  He asks, “How far away from here is the sea?”

“The sea? For heaven’s sake,” says the Arab, “that’s a thousand miles away from here.”  And the guy from Brooklyn says, “Boy, some beach you guys have out here!”

Source | Anthony de Mello, Rediscovering Life, page 102

PONDER AND CONSIDER

  • A beach? Now is this optimism and a positive outlook on reality or radical ignorance verging on stupidity?
  • What is the difference between a sandy beach and a desert?