[Updated October 2022: the link to Hannah Brencher’s article that inspired this post is no longer available.]
[Updated February 2018] In light of yet another school shooting in Florida this month, I am so sad to contemplate the loss felt by victims’ families and the degree of despair the young shooter must have felt to seek relief in snuffing out the lives of others. Yet even the healthiest among us often find ways to deflect the love that flows our way—love that can sustain and nourish us—love that can be passed on to others. From the Heartspoken archives, I’m sharing the work of Hannah Brencher whose stunning words speak to emptiness and need in the world and in ourselves. I hope it will help us all to find that gushing waterfall of love, stand in it, and let it flow over and through us.
Hannah Brencher is, I believe, one of the most talented writers living today. She pierces my heart with words she conjures up and weaves together in potent combinations. To call these combinations of words just sentences is like calling Stonehenge just an interesting arrangement of big rocks.
Perhaps it was because I needed to hear the message, but her recent post entitled “So give me something that gushes like a waterfall…” overwhelmed me with its stark, simple truth and beauty. In challenging the notion that “We accept the love we think we deserve,” she brings us up short, grabs us with both hands by the lapel, looks us in the eye, and proclaims with passion and conviction:
We will always, always, always be the ones who cut ourselves off at the knees unless we start accepting a love we don’t think we deserve… And hey, maybe it is a love that we will never actually deserve but it comes to us regardless and we’ve got the chance to get all wrapped up & tangled lovely in it.
I believe this message has implications far beyond the matter of self-love or self-confidence in our relationship with ourselves and others. It sweeps through our spiritual life and impacts our sense of being worthy, or unworthy, of God’s freely given love.
Have you ever blocked the flow of love coming to you because of self-limiting beliefs and negative tapes running like loops in your head?
Oh, yes indeed I have. Time and time again. Let’s break this vicious and self-destructive pattern! Are you with me?