Asheville, NC be

40 days in a cathedral: week two

15 Mar 2014

“we cannot become what we want to be remaining what we are.” – max depree

lent is the time for confessions. and i’ve got a doozy…

i did not go to the cathedral one single time this week. that’s right. not once did i darken the doors of that beautiful space. but, i have some good reasons – i mean, excuses. because that’s what i need when i mess up, right? excuses. oh, screw the excuses. i admit my failures. here’s the simple truth:  i just confess that i did not go. i did not make it a priority.

here are my excuses:

  1. guests: we had german friends visiting and were all over the mountains around asheville doing touristy things all day long, so i wasn’t downtown and couldn’t get to the cathedral. but, i still took time at home, or wherever i was, and did some very focused lenten meditating and praying. i did not forget those of you whose names and wishes are on my lenten list.
  2. spring break: after the german visitors left mid-week, i could have (should have) made time to go to the cathedral, but i didn’t. i used lina’s spring break as an excuse for the interruption in my routine, or my secret reason to stay home. i still took part in lenten acts of devotion and silence, though. i promise. i did not fail completely.

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so, yes. i am disappointed in myself. but, i am also ok with myself because i did continue to read/focus/meditate/contemplate. was it as good as it should have been? no. but, it was something. i attribute this week’s “cathedral” time as being contemplative in the world – not pulling away, but being in the midst of the world. of course, that is a good thing. but, it is also not the ultimate point of a lenten journey. the idea is to pull away. and to be dedicated to that promise/challenge. to spend time alone in the wilderness. and that i did not do.

i suppose that this is the nature of journeys. everything is so exciting and fun in the beginning. everything is new and there is no lack of enthusiasm. it’s always such joy and an adventure to start something new!

but, as time passes, when it gets down to business, everything gets a little boring, mundane, and/or challenging. it’s easy to just make little adjustments and slack off. it’s easy to make excuses and forget the real intention of the beginning of the journey because it just seems too difficult.

however, if we hold on through the difficult and challenging times, there will be a time when we settle into the routine. there will come a time when we accept what is and then begin to thrive and grow. and we will realize that, because we pushed through, we will be changed.

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that’s the beauty of the lenten journey, of any journey. there is always transformation at the end for those of us who hang on and push through. oh, yes, there will be mistakes and failures. but, those are the points where we learn and grow. a journey that is easy and perfect would not actually be a journey at all.

so, i embrace my failures this week and i celebrate my accomplishments. this is my confession. i lay it down and leave it here. i need you to receive it, for there is no confession done in isolation. i ask for forgiveness from you, from the Universe, and from myself.  and i recommit myself to my original plan of devotion. lord, be with us.

onward, my friends! namaste.

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  • Reply P.E.A.C.E. 15 Mar 2014 at 12:57

    Incredible writing Liz, and I humbly and gratefully ‘receive’ it. Reminds me of my recent decision to ‘wake n walk’ and today, after putting it off for a while, finally headed out. Turned around shortly due to the severity of the icy sidewalks but interestingly I walked right past my own street! I was so absorbed in negotiating the ice that I walked almost 2 blocks past! I’m never that far in the clouds and I laughed when I noticed, and gave a Thanks to God, for it instantly felt like God gently nudged me, saying ‘My child, you need to walk more’.
    I love all of this post Liz, and this really struck me: “i attribute this week’s “cathedral” time as being contemplative”
    Thank you for all you share, and role model. Blessings, Gina

    • Reply liz 15 Mar 2014 at 13:47

      Gina, you are so very kind. I am overwhelmed by your comment. Thank you for sharing your walking anecdote – isn’t it amazing the little messages of encouragement are all around us when we seek to try to be aware. Thank you for your inspiration and for being such a faithful blogging friend. Love & peace. xx

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