Rohr employs some provocative phrases. He writes of the tragic sense of life' that it is not, nor ever has been a straight line forward...Life is characterized much more by exception and disorder than by perfect order. Life, as the biblical tradition makes clear, is both loss and renewal, death and resurrection, chaos and healing at the same time. Life seems to be a collision of opposites.
This means that we all face situations that we cannot fix, control, change or even understand. Such stumbling stones take us places where acquired knowledge or willpower cannot cope. Rather we need to grow beyond our resources and to surrender control. If we only attempt self-improvement in our own will-power we miss opportunities for real change in spiritual growth.
These stumbling stones are necessary suffering. by which we can grow by surrendering self-control. He describes this surrender as being 'out of the driver's seat for a while or we will never learn how to give up control to the real Guide. It is the necessary pattern. This kind of falling is what I mean by necessary suffering.
Second half-of-life wisdom comes from the emergence of healthy self-critical thinking, which alone allows you to see beyond your own shadow and disguise and to find who you are 'hidden with Christ in God' as Paul puts it (Col 3:3).
His conclusion says much about ageing. In the second half of life, you are not making choices as much as you are being guided, taught and led - which leads to 'choiceless choices.' These are the things you cannot not do because of what you have become, things you do not need to do because they are just not yours to do, and things you absolutely desire. Your driving motives are no longer money, success, or the approval of others. You have found your sacred dance.
Now your only specialness is in being absolutely ordinary and even 'choiceless,' beyond the strong opinions, needs, preferences and demands of the first half of life.....you are happily participating in God's vision for you
Plenty to think about!