Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A Piece of Sky

Last night I was winding down after the day and I turned on the television while I was checking my email. And one of my favorite movies was on: Yentl with Barbra Streisand. I started watching it and a flood of emotions came back to me from the first time I saw the movie. Boy can I relate to Yentl. She was a woman living in a world that didn't recognize her value. She wanted to study the Word of God and debate the Talmud with other Jews, but it was considered a sin. She lived in a world where only men were allowed to be leaders in the church. Only men were allowed to teach and take positions of authority.

When I first saw this movie I was in a battle at my church with the leadership over the amount of influence I held in the congregation. My denomination frowned (and still does) on women taking any role of responsibility in the church. It was acceptable for them to work with children or in some kind of children's ministry, but not in a position of leadership over men. So the battles raged and I eventually succumbed and left the church and the denomination.

There are so many songs in this movie that speak to me of that time in my life--relating to not fitting in and wanting so badly to serve God when He called me and the search for divine inspiration and knowledge. But one of my absolute favorites is at the end of the movie when Yentl finally "finds herself" and heads to America where freedom allows her to pursue her passion. She is standing on the bough of the boat as it heads toward her dream and sings:

It all began the day I found
That from my window
I could only see
A piece of sky.
I stepped outside and looked around,
I never dreamed it was so wide
Or even half as high.

The time had come
To try my wings
And even though it seemed at any moment I could fall,
I felt the most
Amazing things,
The things you can't imagine
If you've never flown at all.

Though it's safer to stay on the ground,
Sometimes where danger lies
There the sweetest of pleasures are found.
No matter where I go-
There'll be mem'ries that tug at my sleeve
But there will also be
More to question yet more to believe.

The more I live - the more I learn.
The more I learn - the more I realize
The less I know.
Each step I take-
Each page I turn-
Each mile I travel only means
The more I have to go.
What's wrong with wanting more? If you can fly - then soar!
With all there is - why settle for
Just a piece of sky?

Flying and soaring,
Walden Fan

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