I am trying to be intentional with Lent. Intentionally practicing a release of my “stone” of shame, my name of disappointment. Intentionally offering words in effort to “purge my mind of the airy claims.” Intentionally re-imagining a resurrection kind of life.
But it’s hard work.
Just yesterday I found myself under the power of an offense. What I deemed to be a thoughtless decision by someone that poked at my pain. It hurt. And I reacted.
I’m grateful to say it didn’t take long to hit pause and look for truth. For it’s only truth that will set me free from the power of resentment. Only truth brings healing to the pain. And the truth is…thoughtless oversight happens, miscommunication happens, poor decisions happen…and when it does, I get to remind myself that I too am a target of grace.
For the truth is also that just yesterday, the same day of my own offense, I was the cause of a deep offense in my own family. A miscommunication with my mom that created in her deep pain. It happens. Not intentional, but it still caused pain.
Grace finds its target in me. I am one in need of grace. Without grace flowing into the valley of my pain, flowing between the broken edges of our relationship fissures, all would be hopeless.
I refuse to give in to the hopelessness. Refuse to believe all is inevitably broken. By practicing a target of grace identity AND by seeing others as a target of grace, I am practicing resistance. An intentional resisting of the political propaganda of the “royal consciousness” that only negotiates in the realm of victim and venom. A resisting of the individual life rather than embracing the grace-required community life. A resistance to the depressing demons of offense.
Grace, grace…flow over me. Take from me the desire to be seen as in the right. Give to me an ability to see the face of others rather than the mask of their offense. Grace, grace…go before me and go behind me.
“We need to ask not whether it is realistic or practical or viable but whether it is imaginable. We need to ask if our consciousness and imagination have been so assaulted and co-opted by the royal consciousness that we have been robbed of the courage or power to think an alternative thought.” – Walter Brueggemann, Prophetic Imagination