why bother? what’s the BIG deal?

what’s the big deal?
why is this so important?

why bother with Lent?
why bother with
trying to understand
or figure anything out
or dealing with the mess and the crud

Over time, our hearts and souls, when left unattended, get messy. Lent invites us to deal with the mess. This is not about quickly cleaning things up and pretending they were never there, nor is it about ignoring the mess. Lent invites to roll up our sleeves and sort through the debris of our lives. – Michael Hidalgo, Why Lent Still Matters

getting dirty
and paint splatters

prayer fasting giving becoming doing changing redemption
resilience hope repentance mystery freedom

grease under your nails
sweat on your brow
and scraps

unworthy less than failure selfish chaos confusion questions disappointment heartache defeat

become a new thing
beauty from ashes

I see shattered
You see whole
I see broken
But You see beautiful
And You’re helping me to believe
You’re restoring me piece by piece – Natalie Grant, Clean

what if this newness comes
when we sit in our stuff
when we sort through it
when make moving forward a big deal?

when we make taking care of
who we are
a big deal?

“Lean into the pain. Stay there in the questions, in the doubts, in the wonderings and loneliness, the tension of living in the Now and the Not Yet of the Kingdom of God, your wounds and hurts and aches, until you are satisfied that Abba is there too. You will not find your answers by ignoring the cry of your heart or by living a life of intellectual and spiritual dishonesty. Your fear will try to hold you back, your tension will increase, the pain will become intense, and it will be tempting to keep clinging tight to the old life; the cycle is true. So be gentle with yourself. Be gentle when you first release. Talk to people you trust. Pray. Lean into the pain. Stay there. And the release will come.” – Sarah Bessey, Jesus Feminist

what if we started to bother with
and be bothered by
whatever is

true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse (Philippians 4:8, the Message)

truly, what would that look like?

might there be less
and gossip
and drama
and dissatisfaction
and disappointment?

what if we were in actual communication with God?
instead of using Him as a sort of cosmic
ATM – continually wanting something out of Him –
no matter what it might be

what if we shifted our focus
from meeting our own desires
to concentrating on and thinking about
those things listed above

what if we actually looked for
needs around us
and then did something about it.
what if we gave more
and took less
what if we practiced stewardship
in every area of our lives?

what if we paid closer attention to the words we speak
the things that we watch
what we eat
what we do to soothe our own anxieties
those things which may ignite our senses?

what if we fell into step with Jesus…

to learn the unforced rhythms of grace

what if the big deal about Lent
is that this is a time for us to
sort through our crap
and learn to walk again.

Rhythms anchor us and center us. A rhythm may move slowly at points, and more frenetically at others, but the cadence gives order to it. Breathing is a rhythm. Life happens in rhythm. – Glenn Packiam, What’s the Deal with Lent?

what if we have lost our rhythm?
I think I have lost mine…
or maybe I just need to remember it.

“To walk with God is an unfolding rhythm of life, a wild music of many moods and tempos, embracing the shadows of doubt and disillusionment and the black dark of despair as well as the sweet blue heavens of joy and affirmation, the glorious sunset colors of the soul moved by beauty, amazed by peace.” – Esme, in The Clear Light of Day by Penelope Wilcock

or maybe I need a fresh set of eyes
a new perspective
to live

grace – it’s kind of a big deal.



Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.” (Matt. 11:28, Message)







1 Comment (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: when questions are answers | bitsofbetsy

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

earlier bits

March 2017
« Feb   Apr »

all the bits

%d bloggers like this: