Having now traveled half the distance through the Lenten season, it seems appropriate to take a moment and reflect on a few things, so here goes:
Journey – I really didn’t know when I began what I would need to be prepared for. It was a trip I’d never been on before, so I just threw in the usual: a little creativity, a heart full of prayer, lots of anticipation, scriptures nearby, a sturdy bag of commitment and a pair of typin’ hands. So far, they’ve served me well. Note to self: for future journeys, bring more Kleenex!
Discipline – I do have some progress to report on this one. I’ve found that the simple act of posting a blog….every day….rain or shine….whether I feel like it or not….has actually been very stabilizing for me. Once I let go of the need to publish at a certain time, meet a minimum number of words, be witty or inspiring or interesting….well, that’s when I began to also let go of “doing” and instead turned toward “being” and the discipline somehow began to be freeing. Still pondering the implications of this one, but I think there just might be a life-changer in there somewhere. I’ll report back later!
Discovery – Ahhhh….discovery. My favorite! I’ve been known to spend too much time “in my head” so to speak. Thinking too long or too deeply about things that may or may not have much to do with getting the laundry done! But, during this time of reflection and renewal, I have allowed myself the space to just….be. And how I “be” is to spend lots of time not only “in my head”, but in the deepest parts of my heart. And far from rattling around all alone in those places, God’s spirit has been with me all along the way, instructing….comforting….leading me into deeper understandings of grace and truth. How I love this part!
So, here at the midway point of this Lenten journey, I’m realizing that these three: Journey – Discipline – Discovery….are becoming intimate companions. In my many years of faithful (and not so faithful) times with God, I’ve never walked a road quite like this one before. I’ve prayed with more humility and raw vulnerability than ever before and I’ve cried buckets of tears – some repentent, some of gratitude, and some just because it can be overwhelming to come so close to this overwhelming love and light that I know as God.
All of this in only 21 days….incredible.
But of all the things regarding this experience so far, the part, that’s been the most wonderful and surprising has been the companionship I’ve discovered along the way. I know we are all walking our own individual paths, but I don’t think I could do this without you. And I’m not even being all dramatic (this time.) My heart has been full….it has been empty….it has broken and it has begun to mend. These are incredibly intimate things to share with people, some who I know well, but many I don’t know well at all. And yet, there is a sacredness to our little “Lenten blog family” that I don’t fully understand, but so, so cherish! I’m praying for you, that you are making your own discoveries and that you’ll find what your heart seeks and needs from the One who loves you most.
If I wasn’t fully invested in this idea of change and renewal coming from observing a Lenten discipline, well…. I’m in now.
3-6“Every time you cross my mind, I break out in exclamations of thanks to God. Each exclamation is a trigger to prayer. I find myself praying for you with a glad heart. I am so pleased that you have continued on in this with us, believing and proclaiming God’s Message, from the day you heard it right up to the present. There has never been the slightest doubt in my mind that the God who started this great work in you would keep at it and bring it to a flourishing finish on the very day Christ Jesus appears.”
Interesting to see all you’ve gone thru the past 21 days and the things we have also learned in the process. thank you for these great experiences Shelly! Love ya friend!
So many blessings through obedience not only for you, but for all who are traveling with you. gleaning off your experiences. Thank you!