A Life of Pleasure

September 16, 2023 by Charlie Hedges − 0 Comments

For the main road and shortest road to heaven is run by desires and not by footsteps… By their life he meant their love and desire, which in spiritual terms are their life.” The Anonymous Author of The Cloud of Unknowing

In the Episcopal communion liturgy, it is written, “Eternal God, heavenly Father, in your infinite love you made us for yourself.”

It seems to me that too little is written about the delights (and yes, the pleasures) of God. It is as if God only desires an emotionally detached sort of obedience that leads to perfection and salvation.

Created with Beauty in Mind

It is helpful to be reminded that God is, by nature, love. He desires to be loved and to love. Scripture also recounts his desire for admiration and acknowledgement. Yes. And this is the same God that created butterflies and waterfalls and all-encompassing loving relationships among his highest creation, people.

We know from personal experience that life is much better off with gloriously fulfilled desires for beauty and loving intimacies. Too often in the more conservative Christian traditions the ideas of pleasures and delights are almost anathema, if not considered out-and-out sin. Yet, in the beginning, the man and the woman were created to live in harmony with the divine… in love and in the beauty of a garden where all was pleasure until the sad occurrence of sin.

A Focus on “Noticing”

Recently I have attempted to maintain a more positive attitude toward my life, my circumstances, and the people in my life. I am finding the freedom to simply “be” each day, sans performance and sans stifling congruence with the laws of religious life. I wish to “notice” the good and beautiful things in life, instead of drowning in a sea of despair.

Do I wish to be holy? Yes. But I also wish for a naïve embracing of the present, the anticipated future, and a past of marvelous experiences mixed in with travailed learnings?

Considering all things, I have lived a mostlhy charmed life.

Now, I intend to enjoy what remains of it. Encounter it. Love it. All the time knowing that, this too, is from the good hand of the Lord.

Notice Beauty

And Experience the Pleasure of It All

Photo courtesy of leonid_tit at istockphoto

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