Untying The Gordian Knot

Untying The Gordian Knot

When on his quest to conquer Asia, young Alexander the Great reached the city of Gordium, he was shown the legendary chariot of King Gordon – the city’s founder. According to the ancient legend, the intricate knot of the chariot’s yoke could be untied only by the future conqueror of Asia. So for centuries, countless brave generals and ambitious commanders have tried to solve the mysterious puzzle of king Gordius and failed. Since conquering the known world was quite high up on Alexander’s to-do list, he immediately had a go at unraveling the ropes, but with no success. The young king took a step back and looked at the problem from a different angle and did something brave and totally unexpected. He took out his sword and sliced the knot in half. Just the sort of thing you would expect from someone whose name was the Great.

The Gordian knot became a symbol and reminder for us that when facing impossible situations and complex problems in life, we sometimes have to take a step back and look into the issue from a different perspective. The story also contains an important spiritual lesson. There is a Gordian knot in everyone’s life that holds us back, pulls us down and prevents us from being all that we can be, living and experiencing the life of joy and inner peace we were created for. For some of us this might be an issue of a personal and inner struggle; for others, it might be an addiction, relationship and marriage problem, physical condition or disease, mental health crisis due to anxiety, depression, anger or loneliness.  We do our best to silence the cry of our souls and find a remedy and cure for our wounds. We strive to solve the puzzle of the Gordian knot and maybe we even look into the issue from many different points of view. But what do we do if nothing works no matter what we do and how hard we try?

Often, we are so engaged and engulfed in trying to find a solution to our Gordian knot that we forget that we are not alone, we have a powerful ally and friend. We completely overlook the necessity of raising our concerns and worries to God, sharing and asking for his help. It is equally important to consider that perhaps such over-engagement with the events and circumstances simply does not leave room for God to impact and transform our lives. The simple act of stepping back, intentionally and consciously disengaging from our struggles, breaks the vicious circle of disappointment and grief resulting from constant failure and exhaustion from trying so hard. It creates a sacred and safe opportunity for us to reflect and pray for everything that troubles and torments our souls. More importantly, this creates a precious opportunity for the loving Lord to step into our troubles and calm every storm of our lives with a mere word. 

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