Come in! Come in!

"If you are a dreamer, come in. If you are a dreamer, a wisher, a liar, a Hope-er, a Pray-er, a Magic Bean buyer; if you're a pretender, come sit by my fire. For we have some flax-golden tales to spin. Come in! Come in!" -- Shel Silverstein

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

For a few of my dear friends who, every now and again, need a little reminder.


Autobiography In Five Short Chapters
by Portia Nelson


Chapter 1


I walk down the street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I fall in.
I am lost... I am hopeless.
It isn't my fault.
It takes forever to find a way out.


Chapter II


I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I pretend I don't see it.
I fall in again.
I can't believe I am in this same place.
But it isn't my fault.
It still takes a long time to get out.


Chapter III

I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the sidewalk.
I see it there.
I still fall in... it's a habit... but,
my eyes are open.
I know where I am.
It is my fault.
I get out immediately.


Chapter IV


I walk down the same street.
There is a deep hole in the street.
I walk around it.


Chapter V


I walk down another street.

The End.

Or, rather, The Beginning


Note to self: Yes, religion can be an addiction. So can 'The Struggle'.

Memo to self: Pay closer attention to the content of your own sermons.

14 comments:

Kirkepiscatoid said...

Ok, dear Elizabeth, you are creeping me out here. Last night about midnight, I was e-mailing my vicar as part of my "Advent emptying project" and was discussing how this year seems to be for me learning how to deal with this hole in the season, fueled by "secular Christmas", that has been in me for many years (My addiction may well be grumbling about it) ...and now I see a poem about a hole!

AAAAGGHH...God can such a hemorrhoid when it comes to serendipity!

Muthah+ said...

Walking down a different street--what a blessing.

Terry Martin said...

Portia's story captures well the experience of many of us who are inclined to "walk down the same street" for much too long.

One chapter that I would have added would have been "I try to patch the hole."

The problem with that one is what we use for "filler." And, of course, the reality that some wounds (holes) never completely heal. Much better to recognize that, and continue walking anyway, but stop fixating on the wound, choosing instead to walk down another street.

FranIAm said...

This makes me weep, but in a very necessary and cathartic way.

As to who it is for and for you as well- always prayer, light, friendship, grace, love.

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

Sorry for creeping you out, dear Kirke. Blame it on the Holy Spirit, who has a few aliases: "Serendipity" is one. "Coincidence" is another.

Muthah, dearest. You should know. You are walking that "different street" aren't you?

Terry, you speak the truth, my brother. We could learn a great deal from Muthah+

Hey, Fran. Thanks for the prayers.

Elizabeth Kaeton said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sherry said...

LOL. I just read the autobiography on another blog. I love the tree. So succinct yet so very accurate a representation. Thank you.

altar ego said...

I have loved this Portia Nelson poem for years, and have copies on file to pass on to others when they are in a place to receive this message. Glad to be reminded of it again.

As for sermons, I often find that I preach what I need to hear myself. Fortunately there are others who seem to benefit from the message as well. ;-)

Elizabeth Kaeton said...

I have had this drawing and this poem in my files for more years than I care to remember. It's always helpful to me.

JCF said...

3+ years into recovering, I thank my Higher Power (Nazarean Carpenter Dude *g*) for EA.

Frair John said...

I'm going to print that poem out and post it next to my picture of the Little Flower over my desk.


BTW - I've got a "patch the hole" problem too.

Scott Hankins said...

Not only does this post give encouragement to me as we move into this literally dark season, it also gives me a chance to point one of my distant and facebook pastoral charges here. Thanks, Elizabeth.

holyfoolishness said...

Count me in with the "patch the hole" pew too! Something tells me this pew would fill up quickly!

Doorman-Priest said...

Good stuff. Thank you.