A River, a week and a crucifxion

Tuesday, 26 March 2013
A River, a week and a crucifxion
A river, a week and a crucifixion   March 26, 2013
I was raised in the Catholic faith. I don’t practice it as a religion any longer, but I’m still thankful my parents raised me with a faith belief system, if for no other reason than as an adult, it provided me the first target when I reached that point of realization that my life wasn’t really working the way I wanted it to and it was time to re-evaluate some things.
The thing that amazes me still today is that it was upon leaving the direct practices of that religion that I finally began to understand its greatest foundational beliefs, the death and resurrection of Jesus.  More so, I began to see how that same process took place in my own life, death and resurrection.   Constant and continually moving through my own life, I saw it in ways that the church never taught me about.  I realized that what I was raised to believe was a true story, was also a metaphor for our lives.
It started for me on a river bank several years ago, after my separation from my ex-husband, I had been feeling deeply sad (I hate the overuse of the word “depressed”) for a number of weeks and had no idea what was amiss short of the fact that I had no idea where my life was headed, and felt completely alone and lonely, feeling my life would never be anything but a tremendous struggle.  It was yucky.  I sat on the river bank and cried my eyes out for over an hour, asking God” why” this and “why” that, and” How”, and “When” and all those questions we ask when we’re so consumed by our own emotions we couldn’t hear the answer if the Universe came to us with a bullhorn.  Then, almost miraculously, it ended, literally in the landing of a goose on the water.  I watched it swim, moving in the direction of the flow, fast, but without fight or seemingly, fear.  I knew his legs were working beneath him to change and shift his direction, but he always moved the direction the river did.  Genius!!  MOVE WITH THE FLOW!  DON’T FIGHT SO HARD!!  LET MY LIFE BE DIRECTED!  So, I cried again, but a totally different kind of cry.  The cry that comes from relief and release, from feeling that I was NOT alone, nor am I ever.  Later that day, in another moment of surprise, it occurred to me, it was Good Friday, the day of Christ’s crucifixion. In the Bible we are told that Christ died on the cross, only to resurrect days later. I felt as though I knew, just a bit, about that experience.   And so it goes, each year.
In order to have that ah-ha moment, part of me had to die, to let go of the struggle in this world and to resurrect something different, but still a part of me.  Our deepest truths come from within us, that’s how we know they’re ours, we feel them, inside, and we change with the experience of them.  In order to grow, or move on, part of us has to die away, to be relieved of its grasp on our existence and to be taken out of the driver’s seat that provides our direction.  I’m not suggesting it’s always as easy as crying on a river bank and for me as well, there was an entire life leading to that moment, and an entire life lived on the other side of it. But the moment was a pivot point.
I have each year, since that time, had my own “death” experience that leads to my own resurrection, or that of someone very close to me, this week of Easter.  It always amazes me when it happens.  The last few years, once I noticed it had become a pattern of sorts, I enter this week a mixture of excited and nervous.  What will it be this year?  I’ll wait for the mystery to unfold; I can’t rush it anyway, so I may as well be patient.  I know there are people in my life that I would love a miracle for right now, like everyone I have my biases and my wishes for others to be saved, cured, relieved.  We’ll see.
I ask simply for this.  Notice.  Just notice where in your life you witness this process.  Or ask yourself, “What it is it right now, today, that I would like to give leave to, to have die within me, so that I can experience the life that I truly desire?”
Like Christ in the Bible story, we must face this death with courage, but I have no doubt, he too was afraid, uncertain of things in the process, after all, he was human.  With faith can come courage, regardless of what the faith is inspired by.
This week, be aware, notice, where this story plays out.  Ask gently, look with soft eyes, have courage that comes from your inner faith.
Happy Easter week everyone.