FROM THE DESK OF MRS. FARRELL, Director of Spiritual Formation
This morning in Bible Study, Ms. Hudson asked what we were giving up for Lent. Some had very definite ideas, others had not decided. I had a definite idea and my answer is “doubt”. That may sound like an odd answer but I find it to be at the core of my relationship with God.
I do not doubt my faith or the presence of God in my life. But sometimes, I wish God would make Himself a little clearer. I love the “God” moments when I can so clearly discern the presence of God in my life. Often, those are in subtle, simple ways- and they seem very profound. Other times, when I am wrestling with a large issue, when just a little sign would be so helpful, I just don’t get it. Why isn’t God responding to me when I need help? Well, He is. He always does. But it may not be in the way I am expecting to perceive it.
That goes to the heart of relationship. If I really believe in and embrace God, then I need to relax, be comfortable with the way God manifests in my life, and not insist that it be on my terms. God has a better way and is not bound by time or space or certain requirements. While we may need those constructs in order to “understand”, God does not need them to give of Himself. His presence is always and forever. His desire to give of Himself is constant. He does not appear and disappear– but He might play hide and seek! And the reason for that is to call us into a deeper relationship with Him.
God calls us to wonderful places that we cannot imagine. But we must seek him – not on our terms but His. His terms are boundless.
Lent, then, should be a transformative experience, not just an exercise for 40 days of “giving up” something so we can feel great relief when Lent is over and we can go back to whatever it is that we gave up.
Lent is meant to be life giving, so we have to be willing to accept the fact that we must commit to change that is permanent. So doubt is out the window for me – I can’t end this by adding the qualification, “I think”. I know.