I felt alarmed and horrified by reports that a 25 year old Indonesian man called Akbar, had been attacked and consumed fully by a reticulated python in Sulawesi, Indonesia earlier this week.
My heart goes out to him – May he rest in peace, dear man – and also to his family and community who are in my thoughts and prayers.
I find it hard to imagine a worse fate, than the one which befell poor Akbar, but of course the manner in which we die is often down to the circumstances in which we find ourselves in at a time unknown.
I have been thinking about being consumed in aspects of my own life.
This is an experience which I can relate to, and at times it has felt like a living nightmare, and to recall it from memory is challenging and difficult.
To be consumed at periods of my life with anger and fear, brought about by feelings that the demands made upon me by myself, and others, were beyond my capacity at those times to deliver, made my life for long periods difficult to bear.
To be fully consumed by any issue, particularly over long periods, is to deny the soul the freedom to thrive, and for the soul to thrive, it needs a much wider canvas of experience on which to draw its energy and rest.
These experiences of living a strained and reactive life, have enabled me to educate my soul to recognise the traits in my behaviour which occur when issues start to take over in my life, so that I can put on the brakes, open the windows in my soul to let in fresh air, light, scope, context, love, healing and contrition.
It means that my work-life balance is not an option, its a given.
It means that time spent with my wife and adult children is not an option, it is important.
It means that my time spent with self, either in quiet reflection or in an activity which nourishes my soul, is not an option, it is a must.
It means that my time with God is not an option, it is a vein running parallel through my life on this earth, from which I hope to draw upon for strength and courage at the time it is my turn to be consumed by my own fate of death.
We give thanks for the life, Oh Lord, of dear Akbar, and whilst praying for him, we remember too, the people of Indonesia in our prayers
My next blog will be: Be careful what you wish for