Sunday, March 09, 2008

Without Your Mercy

This is my 8th day in a row online. That's how well that is going. Tomorrow is another day. Another chance to walk away from the computer. Even if it's only 10 minutes online a day, it feels like a fix of some kind.

I sent off my pitch to Outfront this week. That felt good. I've been able to figure out a magazine I can pitch the same story to as well. Yesterday there was a poster at the library for a session with the writer in residence, a new venture for the library, and one that sure works for me. She'll be available for consults for 2 months and I plan on seeing her. I'm feeling ready to take another crack at writing a book. Fear of failure is really what's kept me from it thus far. Writing here has helped me gain some confidence.

I had an appointment with Fr. Charlie this week, the first one since November. Our sessions have moved from counseling to spiritual direction. It is a comfort to spend time with someone who has seen me in the gutter and kept on believing, when I couldn't, that I wouldn't always feel mired in shame. Experiencing the Sacrament of Reconciliation this week had a particular sweetness to it.

Here are bits from my journal:

"Perhaps facing my feelings and letting them stay surfaced will one day be a non issue. So far it's still a lot of work." ~March 4/08

"Last night when I came home it was a clear starry night. I looked up at the stars and said, "wow" several times. I never get tired of their beauty." ~March 6/08

"Without Your mercy we would have no hope." ~March 7/08

"During my time of centering prayer I got a picture of opening my heart to God. Then I remembered how the statue of the Sacred Heart of Jesus at church has made me picture my chest open, my heart exosed and touching the heart of Jesus. Today I understood that opening my heart would make it possible for Jesus to envelop it." ~ March 7/08

"Yesterday's scripture reading was about Jesus at the feast of Tabernacles and how the people wanted to arrest him but couldn't lay a hand on him because his hour had not yet come. I thought about the possibility that if no one could harm Jesus because it wasn't God's will then maybe I could stop worrying that some tragedy is going to befall me and cut my life short. Trust. Do I trust God enough to rest instead of wrestle?" ~ March 8/08

The two disciplines that I'd hoped to start during Lent complement each other. The yoga has been relaxing. Working up a sweat doing yoga has come as a bit of a surprise. The discipline of centering prayer has been a good antidote for my waning affair with perfectionism. As Thomas Keating says, "the only thing you can do wrong in this prayer is to get up and walk out."


Jim said...

I once shook my fist at God and demanded of Him: "Your grace I know and your mercy I know; but where, oh where, is your deliverance?" I swear: a still small voice whispered back to me "But, Jim; My mercy and my grace ARE my deliverance." I asked a couple of preachers about the experience. They thought I was merely hearing my own voice, so I dropped it and, then, a few year later came across Proverbs 16:6. It "works for me".

Indeed, "without Your mercy, we would have no hope". One day at a time, we learn to rest in Him...

Poor Mad Peter said...

If outfront bites and you tape and it's a go, let us know when it's broadcast, ok? Please? :)

Anonymous said...

Yes, like peter said, Hope. I'd love to hear it!

Mary Poppins NOT said...

We are very similar, you and I. I recognize myself all over your posts. Do you realize the amount of learning I have gotten from your journey? You have beaten down the path for me, it seems, and therefore making my hike much less of a struggle. Thank you!

daisydreamer said...

Ah, I feel badly. I was not coming to check on you during the week because I didn't think you'd be here.

I think it's cool that you're going to be able to meet with an author to help with your writing.

Steve F. said...

Today I understood that opening my heart would make it possible for Jesus to envelop it.

I once heard a female Episcopal priest in Alanon describe her understanding of confession as "bringing my whole self to God." I'd have to admit that your image - opening myself up enough to allow Jesus to envelop my heart - would tie in beautifully with her image.

I'm not sure which I struggle more with when it comes to writing a book - fear of failure, or fear of saying something that everyone else has already said better (or more often). My prayer is to grind the grist of others that I have absorbed into my life together and so finely that they will taste a new sausage, and not the various meats and seasonings that came before. I'm just not sure if I can...

And I echo others' comments - let us know when you are to make your debut, please, and how to catch you!