Tuesday, April 8, 2014

My Lenten Journey: My Prickly Spirit

I've been prickly. As in every little thing said to me is irritating me. I am easily pissed off.  I am moody and distracted and worrisome. I am impatient. I am quick to anger and wrath. And I am constantly hungry.

I am prickly.

How do I know? Well, when I am directed about being still, I see it for what it is.  Silence and stillness is illuminating... I see where the weak spots are. I see why I am so prickly. The doubts are slipping in and my gaze has slipped away from God. There are moments when I think I must do the saving and the fixing. I lost sight of God having my back. And that is where the prickly enters. I am doing too much and getting overwhelmed in the process.  I am treading into dangerous waters and I just keep fighting against the tide.

Losing sight of God and doubting the universe's commitment to work out things on my behalf causes me to be prickly. It is a level of selfishness that serves no one... not even me.  When I am so focused on my own lack, I miss turning my attention to the suffering of the world.  I put my own shit first, as if my shit is the only shit worth considering.  It is not.  I am prickly because I am anxious... I can't see the end game.  I can't see where this will go. I am living in the next moment and bypassing the present moment.

This is the heart of the prickly-ness... trying to get to the future while deliberately ignoring the present. Damn it, how did I get caught up in doing this? Ahhh, I took my gaze off God. I allowed doubt and fear to slip in and run amuck.  As I dig deeper, I can see where I can feel like I am not doing enough.  Worrying and wrangling my hands makes me feel like I am serious and doing something. To not worry, to move in my life as if my problems are handled seems like carelessness.  And therein lies the rub... the false sense of worrying as a solution. If I act desperate and sad, then I must be working on a solution? NO NO NO NO!

This thinking is trapping me into sadness and despair. I prefer happiness.  I prefer joy. So why would I turn around and allow myself to get wrapped up in a prickly spirit? BECAUSE I AM AFRAID THAT THINGS WON'T WORK OUT AND I'LL SUFFER AND MY CHILDREN WILL SUFFER AND I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO!

And that my friends is my deepest fear. The thing that scares me. And yet deeper still is this sense that all shall be well... it already is.  And that my life as a point of reference, clearly shows me where nothing was so bad that it killed me, or that I couldn't recover. As a matter of fact, I have thrived.

So perhaps this is the eulogy for the prickly spirit. Another fear is laid to rest. I can go on enjoying my life without shame, guilt and self sabotage. I deserve all the happiness I can hold in my heart. I believe that and I must live it as my ministry.

The prickly spirit is the manifestation of my fears... of not being in control of my future.  But really it simply calls me to be present in this moment and to let go of trying to be here and there at the same time.

Lesson learned. Path illuming.

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