Monday of the First Week of Lent
Come, you have my Father’s blessing! Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. Matthew 25
Lenten reflections ask us to slow down – to make a conscious choice to slow down. However, instead of making a conscious choice, we are slowed instead by ice and snow. Winter made a last dash across the plains. None of this feels much like a kingdom, quite frankly. Not our ice and snow, not the devastation in Japan, the fighting in North Africa, or the floods in the upper midwest and east. Humans are struggling on this earth home.
The gospel sentences are followed in the reading by more familiar ones: For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink. I was a stranger and you welcomed me, naked and you clothed me. I was ill and you comforted me, in prison and you came to visit me.
In order to see a stranger who needs a kind word, we have to slow down. In order to see someone imprisoned by the pain in their life, we have to slow down. In order to see we have to slow down. And too much of the time, these days require a dashing about that has nothing to do with seeing and everything to do with doing.
This morning as I sit here in reflection, the snow coats the trees and yard. One lone nuthatch sits at the bird feeder. I have a meeting this morning, so I’ll soon be out in it. The light is grim, gray. We are forced to go slow this morning whether we want to or not.
To see God: to look back, or up, or out with an unwavering gaze, seeking the light that will fill your eyes with tears at the sadness in the world. Perhaps a better way to put it for today is To Feel God: follow our breath, smiling at our own crankiness at one more snow day – maybe our laugh for today can be at ourselves! – accept that we’ll have to drive slowly and carefully. Accept there will be others who are just as cranky and be willing to yield to that by not rushing. Choose this for a blessing day.
Inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the creation of the world. All the world. All yours.
What task will you offer yourself today to be a part of that creation?