In his younger days, my brother-in-law, William, was interested in spelunking (cave exploration). One time he told me this: “Levi, you’ve never sensed total darkness or total silence until you’ve been in a cave.” Well, that one statement was enough to insure that I would never cultivate an interest in spelunking. Total “anything” tends to scare the hell out of me. He went on to tell me that often times in a cave there were small openings that you’d have to crawl through in order to go any further. “Sometimes it was so tight,” he said, “that you’d even have to pull yourself through on your belly.”
After hearing such things I was yet more certain of my staying clear of that hobby. But his next description of spelunking intrigued me: “Just past these openings,” he said, “there would sometimes appear these huge and beautiful underground rooms. The rooms were strange and wonderful, colorful and surprisingly alive.”
The way he told the story, it sounded as though there were, locked within the earth, these wonderful treasures of beauty, treasures waiting only for those who were willing to crawl through small openings and endure total darkness and silence. Finding such places, he said, made the trip underground worthwhile.
Sometimes beauty is buried deep, hidden under the ground of life. The noise and the activity of the day tend to hide the undercurrent of beauty on which our lives move. I think that sometimes you must endure the pain of crawling through the tight spaces void of light and sound to find the treasures of colorful new formations and cool, clear water. Beauty comes in many forms and faces. It’s important to be attentive and sensitive to the joy of purpose and meaning.
Day 24 Guide
Do you feel like you’ve been crawling through tight spaces? Is life too quiet for you, seemingly void of color? Be strong, my friend, and open your eyes. Be sensitive to everything around you, and identify the things that have at some point added meaningful dimension to your life. Consider this to be the rope of your salvation.
© 2005, Levi Hill