Never judge a book by its cover”; “He’s only goes skin deep”; ”A stitch in time saves nine”. Well known catchphrases that you hearall the time. Do you have any?
What about something that goes deeper, more thought provoking, more intriguing? Sayings that when you hear them for the first time, you know immediately they are true. Others where they require you to think about them and may be hesitant at first or challenge their validity.
How about this one from John O’Donohue, poet and philosopher: “Lifecannotbeneatlycompartmentalised”(JohnO’Donohue). Welive in a world where all too often we are led to believe that you can have a neat box for everything and it’s all about managing it, processing it and being in control. Or a dramatization where they cut through the sheer depth of pain, suffering and dark turmoil that devastation can bring. The true reality may be akin to the devastation of floods, storms or a motorway car crash.
In our gospel today Jesus quotes part of the Shema (Deut 6:5) recited by devout Jews several times a day. He then adds love of neighbour. Together, they go to the root of things and provide a coherent principle for appreciating and observing the other commandments. These two commandments to Love God and neighbour give meaning and direction to the whole Torah.
Love, true love, is something you learn that cannot be compartmentalised neatly. Love will challenge every fibre of your being. Ensuring throughout our lives that we are truly loving God with all our heart, with all our soul and with all your mind is not something that comes easily or quickly and without a lot of practice. Very often it is the crash, the devastation, the turmoil that cries out and demands that you dig deeper, harder, to search for, discover your true depths, where love resides.
Here’s another quote from John O’Donohue: “In order for life to flow, frontiers must remain porous.” That is true Love.