Our Inner Well

Susan Saint Sing never fully disclosed the extent of her own injury, pain and suffering with any real clarity, in her book Spirituality of Sport, a piece I think it is an unfortunate omission from the text.  It would have helped us see into her journey that much more!


Her strongest contribution to my conversation was her understanding of the inner world each of us have.  Sing says it is far more active than our outer world.  For her, the inner conversation is far more active than the body itself, but for the striving athlete (she primarily speaks of Olympic athletes) the imperative is to seek a harmonious and edgy balance between the soul’s experience and the body’s abilities.  In the midst of her own struggles, she describes this inner well, this place where she has gone to find strength, comfort, and even escape.  We all have this inner well.  For some it may feel like an attic where you hide away things you no longer want to make use of, while for others it is more like a fountain that gives life, activity and refreshment. 

 

After reading her accounts I have a deeper awareness of, and appreciation for my own inner well, as a source for renewing my ministry.  People say to me, “I can’t imagine doing what you do!  Being a minister must be hard!  So many people!”  I wonder if my inner well was just built for this kind of work- cherishing people, listening and seeking compassionate space for devastated lives.  Well, it certainly seems to have supported me thusly so far!

 

It is also very Biblical imagery, I believe.  The well was a place in ancient times that you sought out for just those purposes.  Unless you are Jacob, then you find a wife, or two, as well.  A quick glance at Amazon.com yields 535,000 plus responses for books using the search terms “faith” and “well.”  There is powerful imagery for wells in Old Testament literature as well.  It was a common ground, a safe place, a refreshment for the weary.  It was also sometimes a source of contention and conflict!  The well was a place where Jesus met people he normally shouldn’t be talking to.  Hmmmm- I wonder if your inner well is a place that causes conflict, brings renewal, or perhaps, a place where you meet Jesus?  Have you considered your well and what’s in it?  

 

Susan Saint Sing reassures us that our inner well is a place that can carry us through when we struggle, both on and off the playing fields of our life! 

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