Wednesday, July 7, 2010


I have been plagued with chronic headaches (or the same one chronic headache) for the past several years. Sometimes I find that the ache in my right temple corresponds with a vague yearning feeling ... a need to be, do, or have more. It is not a yearning for material fulfillment; I certainly do not need more 'stuff' - though I often try to fulfill the yearning by buying a new book, magazine, or tube of paint. It is a spiritual yearning.

I can read the same yearning in the words of many authors; religious and secular, fiction and non-fiction. I hear it in the voices and words of many singer-songwriters. And I see it in great art; the work of Van Gogh comes to mind. When I see his work in a museum, I am almost always brought to tears by the yearning I see in his brushstrokes.

What are we all yearning for? What is it that we need so badly?

We need to express who we are. We yearn to be able to do that, especially those of us who are compelled by that yearning to create in some artistic arena. I remember when my oldest grand-daughter was a precocious 18 months old; she burst into a very loud rendition of "Twinkle, Twinkle, Little Star" in a restaurant. Her mother asked her to be quieter, and she leaned over to her mother and said very earnestly, "But Mommy, I NEED to sing!" There are times when I, too, NEED to sing. And sometimes, to sing loudly.

For some reason, I also need to paint and weave tapestries and often to write. All of these things are things I do to try to fill that void, that yearning; to reach out towards God and towards the people He has put in my path.

Michael W. Smith sings that he is "desperate for" God. He yearns.

Today I am yearning. There is something empty that needs filling.

Dear Lord, open the floodgates and fill our yearning hearts and souls.


Valerie said...

Interesting post. I think we all yearn for something intangible...what Shel Silverstein called our "missing piece".

During childhood summer vacations, I often came into the house to tell my mom that "my hands need something to do." All these years later, my hands still need to create w/ fiber or pen.

K Spoering said...

Yes, and don't we just sometimes yearn to know what it is that we are yearning for!

I think busy hands still the yearning, too.