All the so-familiar-they-are-like-wallpaper features of my morning neighborhood scene were, I thought at the time, about to appear as expected:
-the neighborhood coffee shop was on the left…yes.
-the two clothing stores on the right…yes.
-that little jewelry place up a few meters past the coffee shop…there.
-tons of honking northbound traffic on the east side….yes, honks abound.
It’s all there.
Then I turn the corner, and there stand twogigantic twenty-foot reindeer made out of metallic twigs.
The artistic splash; that zing of larger than life magic; the towering delight of height all gurgled up in an instant. In my belly there swirled a freshly carved capacity to be energized by surprise!
The sight evoked such a special air of odd and twiggy beauty. And my internal radar went from the normal moderating hum to what felt like pure spiritual aliveness. What an awesome inner charge. Then an existential question did a mental jumping jack:
Why after this encounter does my heart somehow feel more open to God and strangely…feel more awake and in the moment?
A theory: the huge-a-mongo proportions of the reindeer themselves really struck a cord. I think that’s a key factor to what felt like a distinct inner clearing in which God seemed to say: “Hi!” The visual contrast of simply seeing wee little humans engulfed by soaring mythic reindeer was super stimulating. But that proportional thrill stimulated something else. It emerged a form of inner sensitivity (alertness?) to expecting what was not previously visible to appear — and not only appear but expect it to be knowable. This inner sensitivity lasted for a good few minutes.
This all brings to mind a time when I spiritually, emotionally, and intellectually did not expect God to exist. I held no conscious expectation that a relationship with God was viable or knowable. It just wasn’t apart of understood possibilities in my heart or mind.
But then different experiences and conversations and “what ifs” shaped a new spiritual curiosity. Eventually a changed inner life made way for a capacity to not only expect God, but relate to God. Even as my intellectual cues still expressed doubt …my transformed spiritual terrain had already opened up to fellowship with a higher power. It was so proportionally different than previous reality. The heft of which remains so beautiful and strange. Even with persisting doubt, this new reality could not be ignored.
Thanks to the creators of these towering reindeer! …and this chance to encounter fruits of lopsided proportions for things visible and unseen.
“There is no exquisite beauty without some strangeness in the proportion.”