"As a deer yearns for running water,
so I yearn for you, my God."
As I begin Easter reflections for this blog, I am torn between joy and desire as the first theme to take up. On Easter Monday one is full of desire to live in joy, to rejoice with Jesus who is risen from the dead. But our desire to do this is important and makes me want to reflect on the role of desire in spirituality.
One of my favorite books is "Befriending Our Desires" by Philip Sheldrake who says that it is only by attending to our desires that we are able to encounter our deepest self--the image of God within us.
Desires are best understood as "our most honest experiences of ourselves" as we relate to others and our world around us. Catherine of Siena said that one of the few ways of touching God is by desire: "you have nothing infinite except your soul's love and desire."
Spirituality is associated with desire--our own and God's. God also desires us and gives us the desire for Him and that is a source of joy!