Wednesday, August 15, 2012


A while back I mentioned a book I was reading as part of our summer assignment, With by Skye Jethani.  As we were discussing it earlier this week, I recalled one particular passage that mentioned a favorite author of mine, Henri Nouwen.  The chapter was entitled life with faith, and it described how Nouwen spent some time working with trapeze artists.  Apparently it was documented in a film called Angels Over the Net, but I have been completely unable to track down a copy.  The picture Jethani painted was of Nouwen learning to let go and trust, and gleefully soaring through the air.  I even think the word giggling was used in reference to Nouwen's delight on the trapeze.  Now the closest copy of the movie I can find is in an obscure library 470 miles away, so I cannot testify as to the accuracy of that description, but the picture it paints is breathtaking.

Being pretty much the biggest sissy I know when it comes to anything physical, I have absolutely no desire to actually try out the trapeze, especially considering my embarrassing lack of upper body strength.  But I do love the picture of letting go and soaring and not just gritting your teeth and waiting to be caught, but delighting in the release so much that you can't help but giggle at the thought of the crazy life you live.  Such delight could only come from complete confidence and trust and a healthy understanding of your own insignificance.

So this morning when I woke up for the first day of school already behind on a thousand tasks and feeling the weight of unrealistic expectations pressing down on me, I prayed simply to giggle today, to let go and be so enthralled with the sense of flying that I couldn't help but giggle.  I don't really know how well it worked.  I have a lot of ingrained habits I need to unlearn.  But I liked the prayer, and I suspect I will find myself praying it more often.


  1. Another analogy to a trapeze that I once heard from a pastor is " Don't be afraid to catch a new trapeze" or you could be stuck swinging and giggling in the same pattern for the rest of your life. Change! Not something I crave.

  2. I like this prayer, Wendy. I'll be praying it with you!