We are entering the both challenging, and freeing season of Lent. This season of fasting, prayer, and selfless deeds, is meant to challenge us to face that which prevents us from enjoying our fullest participation in the life of The Risen Christ. It is a lifelong struggle. It is a daily struggle. It is a moment to moment struggle. We face this struggle in the reality of the concrete moment we are challenged to live, and live to the fullest. We are each one individually, challenged to enter into the fullness of this present moment. In this enlivening, life giving experience we are led to embrace this reality;” We are not human beings have a spiritual experience, we are spiritual beings immersed in the human condition. "Am I always ready, and willing to embrace such an uncomfortable reality, of course not. This journey into acceptance is a battle. A battle we have to enter, and become fully engaged in, whether we like it or not, if we are really committed to the spiritual journey. We will change our minds again and again about the advisability of this action. We have to face the fear that is an essential part our journey into uncertainty, when everything within us is clamoring for certainty. That is why we are all personally, engaged in the battle that rages in the depths of our souls. Our false self, that part of us that has, for now, not been transformed is in no way prepared to risk the “letting go" that a healthy spiritual journey requires, no demands of us. The embracing, and acceptance of our broken humanity is a blow to the ego, and the desire to be perfect. As authentic human beings, we are “perfectly imperfect." We are desperately in need of a Savior, a Higher Power Who will strengthen us, to meet the challenge of the moment to moment living, require in this revelation. Out of this new way of living, comes the revelation, the birthing of a new you, your true self. Like all newborns, this newborn born within is in need of lots and lots of gentle, mercy-full, unconditioned love. The Source of that love already lives in your depths. The healthy mothering of the newborn brings with it untold wonders, Wonders that are revealed in stillness. Allow yourself time to enjoy!!!
" We are born human, and we spend our whole life discovering what human means.” (Metz, Poverty of Spirit) The Season of Lent is a more concentrated, intense reflection on a journey we make each moment. In Lent, we place under a microscope what we see, and experience, but so often ignore. In ignoring we deprive ourselves of our intimate encounter with our Creator God, Who is revealed to us as A Higher Power. A Power we can trust and surrender to. OH!!! so very slowly. Everything that is worthwhile arrives slowly, for the most part. (How I wished it was otherwise. I have to tell God, "You know I am old, and getting older, so would You please hurry up." Does it work? Emphatically, no). God is our Master Potter, Who works on our clay in a very deliberate, and loving way. Lent is the season of pain-full crafting. It is the season of a more intense purgation, where that which is the way of our free response to God's creative love is slowly removed. This removal creates a vacuum. A vacuum must be filled up. In the spiritual journey we always invite God to "Fill up the emptiness." We will be given what we need, not what we want. Shucks!!! In a further blow to the ego, get this, what we are given is not for ourselves, but for those whom our loving God places in our lives, to be the source of His love. Pretty mysterious??? Reverence this mystery, and you will be slowly drawn into the mystery of who you are, and within Whose living presence you are evolving. Through His death and resurrection the historical Jesus became the risen Christ, so too through the many crucifixions we endure the life of The Risen Christ slowly bubbles us from the depths where we suffered.
Excerpt from an upcoming new book: Our faith leads us to understanding, that our Lenten journey is a journey of purification, enlightenment, transformation, and renewal. We journey with Christ into the heart of the desert so, we can encounter that same Christ, in the desert of our hearts.