|Reflection --- based on the
Affirmation: I Am sweeping out what holds me back from
joyful living. I am choosing to ponder and give energy
to the paths that lead to forgiveness in my own heart.
As we approach Holy Week, we may move into deeper
places. The first part of this affirmation focuses on
clearing out, specifically, the things that are blocking
joy. Joy, as in the natural flow of joy in living. This
joy is never the result of harming self or others. It is
more like connecting in the moment, a happy-to-be-alive
feeling. Does anything come to your mind, when you
ponder -- "what can I take my broom to today or soon?"
-- to dust off a space, to let go of something past.
Maybe it is something in the long ago past, that would
free up some energy now, for joy.
Now, the second part of the affirmation is about moving
with energy, after some reflection, to take one step or
two, towards forgiving. Forgiving a slight, a hurt, a
mistake of your own or another's. In my experience,
forgiveness is really hard, actually impossible, when
the harm is really great, as in huge. And little harms,
slights, can get tinged by the deeper bitterness of the
larger harms -- the primal wounds of our warrior selves,
perhaps. So, I am not for advocating, just forgive. And,
I'm not for making it worse by adding on more wounds or
harm. So, maybe, if you are in the position that you
cannot forgive or even imagine forgiving, maybe you can
ask at some time, that God forgive the harm.
And, then again, maybe it is that you might need to
forgive God a little or a lot. That too can be hard. It
just is what it is, hard.
We hear again and again, forgiveness is not for the
abuser, as much as it is for the victim. It frees the
victim in very many ways. But when the victim is
crushed, she/he can't really think or understand what
that might even mean. And faith in God may also have
been crushed or bruised.
Despite that, I have found, that transferring the
forgiving for a time onto a Greater Power, a divine
power, can bring an easing and a sense of moving in a
direction that begins to free up the energy that brings
more hope, and eventually more joy. I offer it as a
possible strategy. And one day, maybe, it will be right
to be the one forgiving. Beginning that journey, when
you are badly wounded is a huge step to consider. Simply
and slowly, whittling away at whatever needs forgiveness
may be a good strategy until more healing, and more of
the aspects of a better life have changed the dynamic
and lightened the painfulness. And that risk, to ponder
and give some energy to taking a path leading possibly
to forgiveness, frees up some space for joy even now
and, more joy down the road. And joy -- joy is good for
the heart and for life. Joy is good medicine, it heals
us deeply. During Holy Week, soon upon us, there is a
special grace that comes into our world as we in the
Christian world remember the sacred journey of Jesus,
his challenges and his responses leading to his victory
of the Resurrection. I hope, pray and wish that you will
experience such grace - perhaps for the first time,
perhaps right on schedule. God bless you!
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The time of year is coming upon us when we
look deeply at the self: the day-to-day self and the higher self
(the “soul-self” or spiritual self). We call this time of year
Lent. If you grew up in a church it’s likely that when you were
a child you were challenged to give something up that you really
liked, “for Lent.” Back then, that was how we experienced
“repentance;” another word for it would be deprivation, as that
was how we sometimes experienced it. But at the same time, it
was a spiritual challenge, the first “discipline” of the young
Christian life. It was somehow supposed to make us stronger,
wiser, more spiritual, more loving. Did it work for you?
Summer Music Camp
"Rescue in the Night"
from “Le Nozze di Figaro” by
by Patrick Liebergen
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