Last night, my yoga teacher asked what teacher we had in our lives that most helped us find ourselves, to hear our own voices, to still our spirits so that we could hear ourselves and our God speak. My answer came easily – Writing. . . for it is often only when I write that I hear my true self talking and when I can find myself God is usually sitting beside me waiting to talk, too.
So this morning, in my writing practice, I started telling a story from college that I didn’t even know I needed to tell – writing does that, right? It was about a teacher I had, a man I had greatly respected in college but that I had lied to because I wasn’t living up to my expectations for his course. This man’s name is Terry Brensinger, and he still teaches at my alma mater and pastors the church that sits next to the campus. Dr. Brensinger is the first man that taught me how important it was to sit with myself and to wait to hear my thoughts and God’s voice. I didn’t do well at it then, but he whispered to me that such a thing was possible – and for that I am very grateful.
Ten years later, Dr. Brensinger’s lessons came to life when I took a course with Peter Levitt in graduate school. Peter’s course was finally the place where I broke through my mind and settled into myself. He taught me to listen to the voice behind the words, to live in the spaces and then use words to recreate those spaces.
I have never thanked Dr. Brensinger or Peter for what they have given me, and to be honest, they probably wouldn’t remember me now. But I wanted to give them public credit for what they have done, two great teachers who gave me my two greatest teachers – my writing and my God. Thank you.