Lenten Reflection Day #22


So I’ve been writing these reflections for 22 days now. It has been for me the one definitive Lenten undertaking of my life. I haven’t managed to pray or eat or exercise or anything else on any kind of consistent schedule. (I am praying and eating and exercising, but, as is my way, I’m doing all these things haphazardly.) What I have managed to do for 22 days in a row is to sit down and write a few words that I publish each day. I promised to do so to those of you who are bothering to read my words, and that promise has kept me accountable.

Writing these reflections every day has been both a burden and a blessing. I appreciate better what people go through who write columns serveral days a week. Somewhere I read that living under this kind of deadline is like living underneath a windmill. As soon as you successfully manage to negotiate the blade coming towards you,  there’s another one right behind it looking to give you a good wack, and then another, and another. There is no let up. That’s the burden part. I will be glad for Easter to get here so the blades will quit descending upon me.

The blessing is that grace threads have come to me that I’m pretty sure wouldn’t have if I hadn’t forced myself to sit down at my keyboard every day. A spark of a thought — that’s all I’m initially looking for — appears from somewhere.   Can I say that God gave me that thought? To say so might be presumptuous on my part, or, it might be presumptuous on my part to say it is my own thought. Who knows for sure? The interplay between our thoughts and God’s thoughts is mysterious for sure.

The work part has to do with taking that little spark of a thought and developing it for a couple of paragraphs. It is no different, in a way, from the work involved in, say, daily cleaning your kitchen. You don’t necessarily want to do it, but in doing it so you are gratified by the order that is revealed. The universe seems a bit less chaotic. The way forward seems a bit clearer.

So thanks for your part in holding me accountable, and may you allow others to hold you accountable in similar ways. We are on this journey together.

Lord Jesus, you have bound us together in a holy fellowship of accountability, that we might do our part to receive the grace with which you would bless us. Help us to be there for one another in ways that challenge us to become what you have in mind for us. Amen.

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