By Jon Berry
A few weeks ago I heard someone describe Higher Power as the web of connections. It’s not something “up there” or “out there” but “in here” in us. He was talking about people, the insight from someone unknown to us that gets handed from person to person until it reaches us just when we need it.
I think that web can also be music (Duke Ellington’s “Single Petal of a Rose” for me one recent morning). Or seeing messages from my kids light up my phone. Or being out in the city with everything in bloom.
I need all the connections I can get at the moment. Between work and my studies, I’ve been locked away.
A few semesters ago, researching my final paper for a class, and feeling isolated and alone, I found guidance across the ages from someone 1,600 years ago. After trying unsuccessfully to pin down what God was, Augustine wrote about how God made him feel:
“…the light that shines upon my soul which no place can contain; that voice which no time can take from me; that fragrance which no wind scatters; the food which is not lessened by eating; the embrace which satiety never comes to sunder.”
Sometimes, when I’m lost spiritually, the way back is not figuring out “what” my Higher Power is – which, even in good times, is like cupping minnows from a stream – but “how” it feels in me.
(The quote is from Augustine of Hippo, The Confessions [Indianapolis/Cambridge: Hackett Publishing, 2006], Book 10, Part 6. Look for the FJ Sheed translation with Peter Brown's introduction).