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In-let


I've been reading Julia Cameron's The Sound of Paper. A beautiful book. She is the now-famous author of many books, so well-known that I think even posting a link here is unnecessary. After that book, I began reading her trilogy, The Complete Artist's Way: Creativity as a Spiritual Practice. Cameron shares her inner life with her reader in a remarkable way, including how she hears God speaking to her. No, not the delusional kind of God-speak, but the quiet, honest, and undeniable kind. I believe that Charles Wesley described it amazingly well when he wrote these lines:

"Thou callest me to seek thy face. 'Tis all I wish to seek;
To hear the whispers of thy grace, and hear thee inly speak."


Did you "start" at the same word that has always made me "start" in this hymn, entitled "Talk with Us, Lord?" Inly. Not inwardly. Not toward the interior, not aiming for the "in" within us, but going there directly. Inly.

When I first read these lines in Wesley's hymn, oh, how the editor in me wanted to fix that word. At first, I giggled at it. Then, I fretted over it. Then, I "excused" it, given its authorship. But now, with the passage of time, I believe I have come to understand it. And to understand why Wesley used it; not as a choice bent to rhythmic convenience, but because the word is exquisitely right in place and meaning.

Inly. What do we let in? How many media and messages? How many worries and obsessions? How many rotating fears and wishes?

Yet, the Divine stands ready always to enter, according to our invitation. An English hymn-writer of the 18th Century and a gifted 21st-Century author invite me, also, to travel inly and listen.

Text and image, copyright Ysabel de la Rosa, all rights reserved.

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