Somewhere Only We Know

Try as we might, it’s difficult to put ourselves in the places of others.  It has occurred that empathy is something we believe we have which may not be apparent to those in need.  It’s like an unearned credit we award ourselves.  The benefit of the doubt.  Of course, it would help if some sage could come up with a decent definition for such.  Hearing discussions on differences between sympathy and empathy make my head hurt.

It is somewhat easier to have a feeling of compassion for those under duress than to understand their actual state of duress.  Things clear up a bit if experiences are similar or shared.  Playing on Sunday differs from quarterbacking on Monday.  Those who would give advice should be cautioned to know whereof they speak, but care should be taken that we not disallow any comments from the uninitiated or not much would be said about anything.  I don’t have to be in the garbage to know that it stinks.

The exhilaration of conquest is known only to victors while lesser places are more familiar.  It’s hard to enjoy something without accompanying success or, at least, the idea the failure in a worthy cause bears merit.  The latter is not simply philosophic musing and bears thought though it’s nice to hold something in your hand at the end of the day.  What is at the top of the mountain is only known by those who have been there.  Yet, it is better to have loved and lost than…well, you know the rest.

Whether the delirium of dominance or the despair of defeat, effects are intensely personal and felt in the solitude of the soul.  Others may seek admission or storm the castle, but there is a place unknown to anyone other than number one.  Brian Wilson wrote, “There’s a world where I can go and tell my secrets to.”  Each of us may have a place only we know. 

Closest communion passes between those of mutual experience.  Unspoken bonds tie those with like, life lessons unknown and misunderstood by outsiders.  Such endurances are seldom spoken as their remembrances are too precious to verbalize.  The military foxhole or the mountain of fire, the fellowship of walkers is treasured within.

Paul wrote of his desire to have fellowship with Christ.  He said that his longing was more than an intellectual or emotional pursuit.  The fellowship of sufferings would bind his soul to the Redeemer.  Such understanding would mold him to the image of the Savior and find its culmination at His cross.  Paul wanted to know the place many fear and few attain.  He wanted more than sympathy for Christ.

Christians are bound together with an unenforceable bond of belief.  It deepens through shared experiences and endeavors.  The couplings of faith descend from affiliation with our Lord and affectation by the world system opposed to His goals and are totally voluntary.  Faith cannot be forced- only fostered.

It is possible to have an intimate and intelligent relationship with Christ, but it will require involvement in His cause.  In so doing, you will find cohorts likewise occupied.  Experiences will bind you to the Savior and other believers in ways incomprehensible to outsiders.  Valid and valuable knowledge and kinship will develop over time.  It will be joy unspeakable and full of glory.

Sterl  

 

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