by Ken Rolheiser
Never a juju always a snark

I checked into Lewis Carrol’s Jabberwocky for the expression “Never a juju always a snark.” It wasn’t there, although it should have been. A juju refers to a magic used for good or nasty purposes. A snark always has a negative connotation – as in snide-remark.

Life, it seems, is always promising good magic, but too often ending in a snark. “Jabberwocky” takes us back to the earliest English poems where the hero faces a fearsome monster such as the story of the patron saint of England, St George, slaying the dragon. Only in our dreams may we find the happy ending, the “enough” to satisfy our insatiable restlessness.
“We are tortured by what we cannot have. We all experience this daily. …for all but a few privileged, peaceful times, this torment is like an undertow to everything we experience: beauty makes us restless when it should give us peace, the love we experience with our spouse does not fulfill our longings, the relationships we have within our families seem too petty and domestic to be fulfilling, our job is hopelessly inadequate to the dreams we have for our ourselves… 
“…we are too restless to sit peacefully at our own tables, sleep peacefully in our own beds, and be at ease within our own skins. We are tormented by the insufficiency of everything attainable… we are always waiting… for something or somebody to come along and change things so that our real lives, as we imagine them, might begin” (“The Insufficiency of Everything Attainable” Father Ron Rolheiser).

All the stars we steal from the night sky
Will never be enough
Never be enough
Towers of gold are still too little
These hands could hold the world but it'll
Never be enough
Never be enough for me
(“Never Enough”, from The Greatest Showman- P.T. Barnum)
Our hardest burdens become bearable with Christ’s shoulders taking some of the weight. Even our suffering becomes meaningful. Suffering is debilitating as it limits and defines us physically, but united with Christ it expands to eternal and grand dimensions as we join the Saints in heaven. 

Living our lives in Christ’s love provides a filter through which we approach the world. In the love of Christ we extend his grace to the world. Contemplating the Cross will lead us to enough. Jesus, the son, redeemed us. We have celebrated many Christmases trying to grasp that one. Christmas is the miracle of faith.

The seasons of our lives are so full of blessings, if we only stop to contemplate. The Holy Spirit is power at our disposal. Faith makes it possible to grapple with the impossible. The Holy Spirit can help us do the things we may think are impossible.

The torment of restlessness and insufficiency remains part of what we are. As author Ron Rolheiser puts it: “we are congenitally over-charged and over-built for this earth, infinite spirits living in a finite situation, hearts made for union with everything and everybody, meeting only mortal persons and things… We are Grand Canyons without a bottom. Nothing, short of union with all that is [with God], can ever fill in that void. To be tormented by restlessness is to be human.”

If we accept our humanity, we become more easefull, Ron says. In this life there is no finished symphony, no clear-cut pure joy. Fortunately, we live not only for this life, but for the joy that is to come.

(577 words)