Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Late to Lent: Days 29-30

you probably know the drill, but if not, you can catch up here

Day Twenty-nine
Empty, I feel dried up and depleted tonight. It’s probably what I’ve been feeding myself. I mean today wasn’t a bad day but like most Mondays, I got up and rushed out the door a little sleepy after staying up late to read fluffy fantasy novels. After babysitting, I ran errands for a couple of hours, ate lunch while checking out a few blogs and then spent the next three hours make a boatload of mushroom soup and compound herb butter. (Note to self, always, always halve soup recipes.) Did I really just give you a play by play of my boring Monday? Told you I was kind of empty. Notice I didn’t really have a quiet time in there? That’s what I mean about feeling dry because I wasn’t nourishing myself today. I prayed a little on the run, had some worship music on with the kids and while driving, but otherwise it has kind of been mental junk food, which is all fine and good in its place but I can’t live a whole day on it. I am going to go read in a little bit, maybe finish Mark, but I think this is what I am supposed to write about on day twenty-nine. I need to confess to you so that I do not forget that if I don’t plug in each day, I go empty. I can’t skip my soul rations and expect to have anything to share. I believe it was in A Woman’s Heart, God’s Dwelling Place that I heard Beth Moore say “Bread of Heaven, served fresh daily.” I fasted the wrong thing today.


Day Thirty
It’s another odds and ends ADHD sort of day. After yesterday’s barrenness I begin my morning with a time of devotion, of setting aside my agenda to focus on a little soul food. Ann wrote about service being the natural and right result of eucharisteo thankfulness. And I reflect on how often this last week my service to my family, the day to day contributions of living with other people, has been miserly measured, compared, complained about and grudgingly given often with some sort of demand in return for services rendered. It seems that there is no end to rough edges in my character longing to be smoothed out. But there is a healthy truth in that awareness. When I rightly see myself, without self-loathing or self-righteousness, I am more graciously able to accept those around me and cognizant of our constant, unfailing need for God.

Moving on I finish reading the Gospel of Mark, finally. For such a short Gospel it seemed to take me a while to complete. I’m reading in the Message and after a lifetime of hearing these verses I relish the fresh perspective the translation offers.

Jesus told them, "You're all going to feel that your world is falling apart and that it's my fault. Mark 14:27a MSG This verse rings in my heart. I know this feeling, like all is crashing around me when I was depending on Him to keep it up and to build it in the first place. Abandoned by God. That is such a hard place. I haven’t considered that the disciples felt this abandonment. It’s so easy to be calloused reading these accounts several thousand years later. I mean Jesus told them point blank that He would be killed and then rise again in 3 days. But living that, it would seem so impossible, or as if there was a poetic spiritual truth in those words that they must not understand. He couldn’t actually mean killed as in dead and raised as in alive again. So they felt their world falling apart and it was Jesus’ fault and today my heart goes out to join them.

He came back and found them sound asleep. He said to Peter, "Simon, you went to sleep on me? Can't you stick it out with me a single hour? Stay alert, be in prayer, so you don't enter the danger zone without even knowing it. Don't be naive. Part of you is eager, ready for anything in God; but another part is as lazy as an old dog sleeping by the fire." Mark 14:37-38 MSG Ahhh Peter, how I love that man. So nice to see me represented as a disciple. Part of me is eager, ready for anything in God but another part is a lazy dog sleepin’. Yep, I think that is pretty darn accurate.

Four beatings! Jesus endured four beatings before being killed. Mark 14:46, 65 and Mark 15: 15-20 MSG My heart hurts for Him. Can you just imagine knowing Him walking here on earth? That gentle strength, wholly kind and wholly masculine, in the flesh. And they beat Him and mocked Him. All of Hell lined up to finally take their shot at God foolishly becoming vulnerable, mortal man; all of Hell working through us. Then at nine in the morning He is nailed to the cross. I ‘m struck by the wood; a carpenter killed on rough hewn wood. I don’t think I ever noticed that it took six hours for Him to die. Six hours of agony, of burning searing pain, of ragged, elusive breath and all this after a night of betrayal, rejection, humiliation and beatings. Six hours seems so long to me. And yet it was short to Pilate. Mark 15:44 MSG The monstrosity of man, of us. And Jesus hung dying for six hours subjecting Himself to our devastating cruelity to rescue us, the brutal, from our own brutality. It is more than I can take in on a bright, sunny Tuesday morning.

And then at the end of Mark, Jesus sat down beside God in the place of Honor. Mark 16:19 MSG He sat down because the work was done, finished, the victory His and through Him mine. And the words to the new song I will perform on Sunday slowly rise to the forefront of my mind:

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7 comments:

Vicki said...

I learn stuff here Joybird. Thank you. I also just learned about a month ago what Lent actually was...slowly but surely.
And, I haven't read the book of Mark yet, but the Passion of the Christ movie really opened my eyes to what Jesus did for us, and how he suffered so. That film helped me to really "get" it.

becky said...

Confession is always good for the soul, isn't it?

Jodi said...

thanks for the fresh bread, it was delicious.

mountain mama said...

lovely words friend! :)

Jen said...

I love the honesty and truth you speak here.

tinuviel said...

Thanks for your honesty. Was Tuesday better for the repentance?

That version of Mark 14:27 doesn't pull any punches, does it? I know that Saturday-night feeling, too.

This is my favorite sentence of yours in the post: "When I rightly see myself, without self-loathing or self-righteousness, I am more graciously able to accept those around me and cognizant of our constant, unfailing need for God."

Good stuff. May your worship singing be true Sunday!

Rachel said...

I have enjoyed reading your perspectives in your journal this Lenten season, Have a good Sunday singing and worshiping.
Blessings,
Rachel

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