Tuesday, April 7, 2009

One More Lenten Penance

It's not over yet... there's still time for a little more Lent this year.

I mentioned recently that I had some hardness in my heart, some anger that I was holding on to. Unfortunately, several things happened in the past week that caused my anger to smolder and strengthen, and offering forgiveness before Easter seemed like a distant dream.

Last night, I went out with a friend and poured it all out. How on earth am I going to receive Jesus on Easter with a happy heart? My heart is so filled with venom right now.

She listened. Gently, wisely, kindly, she offered me her support. She nodded and smiled and squeezed my hand at all the right places.

Then she made a really concrete suggestion. It was one I'd considered... something I knew I had to do... but also something which I knew would lead to conflict and confrontation. And I want to avoid both of those things as much as I can. Oh, I can argue and debate with the best of them, but with this person, I just want distance, I want to walk away, and I want to forgive without a whole big "thing" between us.

Well, I took my friend's suggestion to prayer this morning, and decided to do it... even if it leads to some level of confrontation. Perhaps trying to avoid confrontation, to try to maximize my comfort in all this isn't the right attitude to have anyway. After all, I do have a part in this whole problem... trying to avoid all confrontation doesn't force me to take responsibility for my part.

I feel my heart softening a bit; forgiveness feels more doable. Easter is coming, and I am getting ready for it... in all the ways that really matter.

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