Friday, March 9, 2012

the rocky road of lent

If Pintarest could talk, you would think we all floated on butterflies and ate cake at every meal. You would think the Bible was in our hands from morning to noon and our knees were calloused from prayer. You would think this 40 day journey is like a monk rambling through the woods, gazing at the bright blue sky.

Lent doesn't work that way. Its a hard road, meant to cut off the fat and get to the meat of our spiritual life. Its difficult in and of itself.

And every year, but it seems more acute this year, we come under attack. We are pulled and distracted from our focus by very real happenings around us.

This year we have suffered sickness, tragedy, family struggles, money headaches all in the past few weeks. Some nights all our prayers consisted of was the plea for an hour without a sick child waking. Some days my thoughts have hovered around worry instead of meditating on scripture. Not the Pintarest picture of spirituality, but a very dirty, world-weary woman who is looking through the fog for the path.

A companion to me this lent has been N.T. Wright's Lent for Everyone. It is simple and short and gives me a window in each day to let my heart rest and listen.

One day, the scripture was about the woman with the issue of blood who reached out and touched Jesus' garment and was healed. N.T. Wright challenged to the reader to be like the woman and go to God with what we want. Not in a "I want a pony for Christmas" kind of way, but to look deep down at our desires and fears and motivations and confess to God what gnaws at us. There is no guarantee He will give it, but in His graciousness, He invites us to come to Him and ask.

When I sat still and let the myriad thoughts dance around my head and my heart sunk down into the depths, I found the word "Security" came to me. That is what I am reaching out to touch His garment for. That is what I ask my Lord to give, if it is His will. To know my feet are on solid ground, and that the ground before me will hold too.


  1. NT Wright does it again, eh? Maybe I'll observe "Year B" next year.

  2. I have always loved the thought that this woman reached out in expectation...that she knew if she could just touch Him she would be healed...she just had to get to Him. I think of this often and pray with expectation of getting an answer! Love you.

  3. It seems that the attack always takes me by surprise. I'm expecting it, but it still knocks me down. Lent was very hard for us this year too, and I'm so thankful to be on this side of the Resurrection now. Christ is Risen! I hope you are having a blessed Bright Week!