Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Not Exactly a Soup Question!

I love this line, from one of my all time favorite movies, Finding Forrester. Jamal, the young protege, asks the recluse author Forrester what's in the soup he's stirring. And follows it with a very personal question about the author's failure to write another novel. Forrester (played by Sean Connery) comes back with "that's not exactly a soup question, is it?"

Truth is, the curmudgeonly author needed the probing of the inquisitive young man as much as Jamal needed the older man's wisdom and encouragement. In the end, Jamal writes an award winning piece for a school writing competition, while Forrester finds the freedom to step outside his apartment and truly live life, for the first time in years.

I'm pretty sure my response to the questions I'm asking and being asked, by God as well as others, is every bit as important as the questions themselves. Not so much my answers, but my response. Am I receptive to questions or do I get defensive? Am I willing to probe my heart for the true answers or do I come back with the first thing that comes to mind? My tendency when asked those deep questions of others is often to wall up and step away, or pose a quick defensive comeback, much like the character Forrester did.

I guess I'm learning I don't need to have all the answers; I just need to be open to the questions.

Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts. Psalm 139:23