I sit down at the dining room table, hoping to set my heart at ease. Maybe if I spread these thoughts on paper, my mind will stop taking me ’round in circles.
My search engine had already led me on quite a maze. A road that led to confusion, more questions, and no answers whatsoever. Clearly, that path was not working for me.
Armed only with a notepad, pen and Bible, I begin to create my map. With me at the starting point, the cross at the end, and Lent being the territory in-between. My goal is finding the best path for me.
It seems natural to begin by listing that which I believe to be true. The best reasons for me to give effort to this process in the first place. For I didn’t grow up with the tradition of Lent engrained in me. Yet upon reflection, the purposes of such a journey seem to make it worthwhile:
* To see but a glimpse of what my Savior experienced. For me.
* To make my life more about Him and less about me.
My pen stops flowing. I cannot write any more. I had a dozen more in mind, but that last reason in and of itself makes every effort worth it.
Yes, to increase Christ and decrease self — that’s worth striving for.
I find myself writing in caps lock: HOW???
Easy answers come first. Giving up a luxury of sorts for 40 days would be annoying, but doable. It would take true effort to make the sacrifice worth it — striving to make sure I focused on Him while I skipped whatever I chose to shed.
That I could do. I’ve done it before. And I fill up the page of ideas with ease.
But does it get me to my ultimate goal?
To become less so He can fill more of me?
My answer: Temporarily at best. Which might be a good start. I try to draw the map in front of me, realizing it only leads to dead ends. This won’t do, for I want more. I need more of Him long-term.
No, a 40 day sacrifice is not going to cut it. This year, I’m going to strive to peel back layers. To shed more of me. And when I get to the cross, I’ll hand the scales over. For keeps.
Can I do that? What does that look like? What can I shed that I won’t pick back up again?
My companion doubt offers to take over. And I nearly let him as I tear the map out of my notebook, fully intending to throw it away.
And then I’m reminded once again. This was my year. The year to be intentional. This is something I need to do.
I smooth out the crumpled map, my lips curl upwards as I envision unfolding a great treasure map.
Yes, this will be my map. My key to discovering the greatest treasure available to me: Christ.
I best get busy. I’ve got some serious travel plans of self-denial to make. I hope you’ll come along for my journey.
How about you? What can you leave at the cross this year? Will you join me on striving to become less so He can fill more? I’d love to hear.
Thanks for sharing your time with me.