Lamb and Lion
The Prophet Isaiah. An extraordinary Old Testament figure.
His poetic writing is exquisite, and his spiritual insights profound. The prophecy in Isaiah 11 is unbelievable:
The wolf lives with the lamb,
the panther lies down with the kid,
calf and lion feed together,
with a little boy to lead them (Isaiah 11).
If you can, read Isaiah 11: 1-10 slowly – in a contemplative way – noticing the imagery and its symbolism.
Then try this extraordinary ‘interpretative tool’ in order for the meaning to arise within you:
There is within you a lamb and a lion.
Spiritual maturity is the ability to let lamb and lion lie down together.
Your lion is your adult aggressive self. It is your initiative-taking and decision-making self.
But there is also your fearful, vulnerable lamb, the part of you that needs affection, support, affirmation, and nurturing.
When you heed only your lion, you will find yourself over-extended and exhausted.
When you take notice only of your lamb, you will easily become a victim of your need for other people‘s attention.
The art of spiritual living is to fully claim your lion and your lamb (Henri Nouwen, The Inner Voice of Love, 67).