“Sweet, sweet surrender,
Live, live without care,
Like a fish in the water,
Like a bird in the air.”
~John Denver, Sweet, Sweet Surrender.
A surreal reality contends upon us when we contemplate our finiteness. The thought or action we’re currently engaged in could easily be our last.
But chances are this will not be our last moment; the vast majority of us have years of life to look forward to. The very chance breeds the possibility, however.
When we imagine we’re in our final moments we can readily hold a dramatic tension between our hearts and minds — that is to enjoy a carefree life, as little things carry far too much seriousness, whilst also noting just how important the moment is for living the ‘last chance’ i.e. to get it right.
Live, Live Without Care
As the sung words of John Denver filter through our conscious minds, we envision not so much a lack of care as a lack of superfluous concern. There’s a big difference.
One has ambivalently vagrant care and deals in life without thought. The other is about caring so much, whilst weighing eternity in the lap with the present hour, becoming convinced to the value of a carefree approach.
If we’re to resolve one half of the mystery for end-time living it’s to be less bothered about the things that don’t matter.
Sweet, Sweet Surrender
Envisaging the ability to yield the soul to the God-imbued moment is what sweet surrender is about.
At death we will surrender. This is because our bodies will be taken from us, the spirit living on. Death is the best illustration of surrender.
As I engage in my practice of daily napping — taking 5-15 minutes to revive myself to alertness — I must surrender the eyes to my Maker; I must be prepared to fall into sleep. I must will it. It’s surrender; the willingness to yield the will toward relinquishing consciousness.
It’s just as pertinent to give up, wilfully, and make the effort to succumb.
Honouring the Last Chance
How many of us will know when our time’s up; when we’ve engaged in our last action?
None of us.
Our last chance is now. We make the best fist of what we have, now. Still, the nature of life is to slip into taking things, again, for granted.
What if we did that, and wilfully resisted the need to surrender dishonouring the last chance? We could regret it in eternity.
Honouring our last chances — which is holding high potentially every thought, word and deed from now until our deaths — is about exhibiting a sweet surrender, embellished by an appropriately carefree spirit.
That’s the theory upon which we try our best.
© 2011 S. J. Wickham.