By Scott Erickson
Wearing a linen ephod, David was dancing before the Lord with all his might. —2 Samuel 6:14
I love the song “Set Adrift on Memory Bliss” by P.M. Dawn. I love it because it reminds me of my junior high crush Lynn Voorhees, which never amounted to anything. But I love the feeling. Because to love someone or something deeply is the best feeling of all. Because to love is to desire, and to desire is to want to be here. This song reminds me of what a joy it is to be here.
My favorite smell is low tide. I love low tide. I grew up in a small Pacific Northwest town called Mukilteo, and the smell of salt and decay was always around. Low tide is magical because it reveals a world that’s mostly hidden. And to walk around the tide pools and scattered kelp beds and witness that hidden world is to remember that what we see is not all there is.
I love rolled-up socks.
I love plastic sandwich bags, with or without sandwiches in them.
I love a good rainstorm.
I love the way my body feels after a long swim.
I love my body. Well, I’m trying to. I mean, I’ve been programmed to see it as not good enough for so long, mostly in Speedo® situations, that I forget what a joy it is to be incarnate in such a magical biological masterpiece. I remember this most when I hug my kids.
I love remembering that moment when my daughter was a baby, and I was lying on the bed with her. I heard the voice of God tell me she was going to be a gift to the world—and when God tells you a secret, you never forget it.
I love church. Not necessarily what we’ve made it in America. There’s a lot of fluff that can go away as far as I’m concerned. But here’s what I love. I love what happens to my eyes and my ears and my heart when I’m in the midst of a gathering. The poet Rumi has a poem that says, “Where am I going on this glorious journey? To your house, of course.” I believe this poem the most when we gather in Its holy name.
I love you, Giver of existence—even though I have some deep questions about your invisibility and the suffering in this world and the absurdity of salmon migrations! I see that you have given us the gift of existing. Admittedly, existing is trying at times. There’s so much loss. Don’t get me wrong. There’s a lot of loss. But what a gift to receive, and what a world to live in, and what a cup to drink deeply from.
So thank you for my life. This one. With its dad tummy and its forty-year-old creaky knees and its proclivity to melancholiness (Enneagram 4!). I’m glad to be alive! I love being here.
We as your people want to dance in your presence, in the presence of the Giver of existence, in the presence of Existence itself.
So come, come and dance with me. Not because it’s a religious thing to do, but because it’s something lovers can’t be stopped from doing.
Taken from Say Yes: Discover the Surprising Life beyond the Death of a Dream by Scott Erickson. Click here to learn more about this book.
Say Yes gives you the mental and spiritual practices you need to enjoy your life again—and bring greater fullness than you could imagine before.
“My life doesn’t look anything like I wanted it to. How do I even keep going?” When the dreams for our life die, our vision of who we hoped to become often dies too. That’s when The Voice of Giving Up appears.
Visual artist and spiritual director Scott Erickson has had long midnight conversations with The Voice of Giving Up, and he knows how anxiety and depression make The Voice especially loud. But he’s discovered that our darkest moments are sometimes doorways to a deeper, more joy-filled journey of recovering who we are, why we’re here, and why the future bursts with possibilities if we are willing to say yes to life’s brightest gifts.
In Say Yes, Scott helps you learn how to reawaken your deepest desires, disempower your greatest fears, and identify the destructive narratives holding you back. Combined with Scott’s beautiful, thought-provoking illustrations, this is a profound exploration of beginning again after:
- Disappointment at how life is turning out
- Suspecting we are not prepared or smart enough
- Losing hope that change is possible and that pain can have a purpose
Take the first step to gain the gentle yet powerful tools you need, and say yes to what lies ahead today.
Scott Erickson is a touring painter, performance storyteller, and creative curate who mixes autobiography, biblical narrative, and visual aesthetics that speak to our deepest experiences. He is currently touring his multimedia storytelling piece “Say Yes: A Liturgy of Not Giving Up on Yourself” and is the author of Honest Advent: Awakening to the Wonder of God-With-Us Then, Here, and Now. Scott is most loved by his wife, Holly, and their three children in Austin, Texas.