If this blog had a summary it would begin with, “it’s been a long time since I wrote anything here…” Tomorrow is the first day of Lent. I have always observed this special time in the Christian calendar in some way. It has been my way of reconnecting to the Holy Spirit by surrendering something. Each moment of surrender was meant to be a daily reminder of the life and teachings of Jesus.
For about 6 years I focused on physical health and stepping out of my personal comfort zone by practicing veganism. Then a couple of years ago I decided to add a gluten and sugar-free diet to that too. Well, we almost got divorced (I kid…kind of) and I became really sick and had to quit (I was too busy to do this diet well enough to take care of myself). I came down hard on myself for giving up. Last year I tried something new — I quit social media, including facebook, twitter, and Netflix (although not social media) with success. Success in that I didn’t quit, but reconnected with Spirit? – no. I realized that Lent had become all about effort. It was no longer about surrender.
This year, Ian and I are going on a journey to wellness that begins tomorrow, but doesn’t end on Easter Sunday. We are practicing a new lifestyle that will include health, physical activity, more sleep, and more mindful living. The desire is for gentle effort to become natural surrender. For me, Lent should be time of personal reflection and that’s what I have in mind. I will become an active participant in my own life. I have felt disconnected and distracted for a long time. I am looking forward to this time to plug back in to who I truly am. Part of that might involve writing more, but his journey is about learning to be gentler with myself too. So, I won’t make promises I’m not sure I will keep. What I will do is work with the intention of taking the time to pray, meditate, practice, write, read, listen to music, play games, cook, enjoy nature, and, most of all, love the people in my life… including myself.
Since my last entry, I was accepted as a candidate for ministry, I sold my business, I gave up teaching public yoga classes (for now), I worked at the hospital for three weeks and a restaurant for three months. I even quit facebook because I thought that was the reason I was so distracted (it wasn’t – I’m coming back baby!). I start a new part-time job tomorrow that promises to be a great fit for these next 3-4 years of study. I will graduate with my BA in May and I have the summer off with my kids. I will begin my MDiv in September. So much has happened and there is so much to look forward to, but I often feel like a distant observer of someone else’s life. The ultimate surrender for me will mean being a fully present loving player in all the moments of my life. Each day, I will start by saying the words below to remember how to be most authentically me!
I surrender to the will of God and fearlessly trust the Divine to lead me.
The journey begins again now. Time to make the pancakes!