Saturday, 10 March 2012

Pilgrim in a barren land

I've needed this Lent like a bullet to the brain. But it is better to live it than to try to evade it. In fact I don't think you can avoid Lent, it is simply there, in the air, like the faint smell of Spring. The voice calling for repentance and conversion is real and speaks to us all, we can choose to block our ears but it doesn't make it go away. We all must admit that we are journeying through a wilderness, other creatures may be a comfort but they are also a distraction, we have to confront ourselves alone before God if we are to be of any use to Him.

The only thing is, I was already in a wilderness before Lent:

And I said: who will give me wings like a dove, and I will fly and be at rest?
Lo, I have gone far off flying away; and I abode in the wilderness.
I waited for him that hath saved me from pusillanimity of spirit, and a storm.

Psalm 54:7-9


The wilderness is a blessing, you have to confront yourself, you have to survive, you lose all your feelings yet fill your heart. Your senses are both mortified and heightened at the same time.

Therefore, behold, I will allure her, and bring her into the wilderness, and speak tenderly to her.

Hosea 2:14



So what is new about my Lenten wilderness?

Sheer, unremitting, backbreaking, hard, hard slog.

Body, mind and spirit are being pushed to the limits. There is something lurking in the shadows wanting me to fail, there is a knife edge off which I must not fall. I have no sense of balance and my reliance on God is absolute, yet I'm deaf, dumb and blind in prayer.....everything is an act of will, there is no sense. This is not a will trapped in desolation and feeling abandonment, it is a will acting out of duty, a promise I made many years ago, an act of sheer blind obedience.

Please, Lord, when Lent is over, can I have an Easter this year? Or do I have to keep on waiting......

Thy will be done.