On being open...

On business trips, I almost always have travel time to read.  This trip, I'm in the middle of the Naked Presenter--possibly the best book I've ever read on presentations.  The author, Garr Reynolds, lives in Japan and much of the book applies Japanese thinking to the art of presentation.

In one of the sections, he talks about the symbolism of bamboo. Reynolds writes,
"Find wisdom in emptiness...One cannot fill a cup that is already full.  The hollow insides of bamboo stems remind us that we are often too full of ourselves and our own conclusions.  We have no space for anything else."

The idea really struck a cord with me.  There are many places that our lives are full.  Our schedules are full.  Our closets are full. Our head is full.

The practice of emptying is a powerful one. Of building margin into our days. Of giving away things. Of letting go some of our ideas so that we can hear new perspectives and learn from others.

Maybe the most powerful thing about practicing "empty" is that it is an exercise in trust.  Trust that God will provide for us, care for us...keep company with us.

I read in a devotion this morning, "the open heart never fails to find inspiration."  I think I need to develop more of the spiritual discipline of 'empty.'

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Maira Gall