An iceberg calves from the great glaciers of Greenland. That chunk breaks off from the glacier, and plops into the North Atlantic Ocean where it may last for over a year depending on whether the currents take it north or west or south. The iceberg brings with its frozen self some 5,000 years of debris that the glacier picked up in its slow trek to the coast. While the iceberg bobs in the ocean at the surface only 1/7 of it is visible, the rest is a frozen blob of ice, dangerous to ships that ignore its unseen depths.
When we surrender our lives to God, we are like an iceberg in many ways. First, we are thrust into a totally new environment, the northern seas which represent God’s kingdom. We’ve brought with us, frozen within us, all the debris of our past—hurts and vulnerabilities, mistakes and wrongdoings, plus all of our goodness and successes, too. As we travel the ocean currents, as we experience being in God’s presence, we too begin to melt, although the biggest hurts and mistakes may stay frozen in us until the very end.
As time goes on we are slowing down, slowly becoming one with the ocean waters(read God), letting go of the debris and the frozen places within that we never thought would be melted away.
Today, as I sought solace for feelings of loneliness, God reminded me of this imagery which I have treasured for over twenty years. That loneliness—I live alone now—only surfaces very occasionally, but I am content now to see its place in this metaphor. Only as the frozen parts around this vulnerable place in me melt, can I be more and more available to God and God to me.
So many places in me like this one have been healed, melted and become like another drop in the great ocean of life. So it is with the grace of God leading us all into greater relaxation of what is frozen within us, into the freedom of letting it go into the great ocean of life, until we become truly immersed in God and God in us.
December 9, 2011 Just one note: I am not sure how well the great glaciers of Greenland are doing.