This is what is meant by following Christ. In this way, disregarding earthly gains, Matthew attached himself to the band of followers of One who had no riches. For the Lord himself, who outwardly called Matthew by a word, inwardly bestowed upon him the gift of an invisible impulse so that he was able to follow-
excerpt from a quote by Bede the Venerable (673-735 AD), Anglo-Saxon monk
This was my Lenten meditation for today:
In a given situation, act as if everything will work out. Allow this to influence what you say to others and what you say to yourself.
This was both terrifying to me and freeing at the same time. This idea of freedom is what we strive for, but in the context of the contemplative life is a much different idea. This freedom exists from materialism and worry, from earthly wants for heavenly gains. This freedom exists in believing in the notion that God works all things for the good of those who love him. It exists in the freedom the trees experience, swaying to and fro, in the birds of the air who do not worry and in the hearts of men who long to be there.
Our words influence our steps. God moves our hearts but we are afraid. We then tell people that we are afraid. Then they are afraid. This is not freedom.
This type of spiritual freedom is jumping off a cliff type stuff, diving into a deep body of water, embarking on a mission to a place you’ve never been, selling every possession you’ve ever owned for something more…
It’s dropping the net when He tells you, following when He tells you, not looking back when He tells you. It’s a forward movement, an awareness of adventure, a trust, a not being afraid.
It’s living not on the surface but below it, it’s individualized, it calls you to be different, it tugs at you and will not let go…
God does not give us time to plan, He’s had eternity to do that for us.
When it’s time it’s time.
This is how you are to eat it: with your cloak tucked into your belt, your sandals on your feet and your staff in your hand. Eat it in haste; it is the LORD’s Passover.
Our lives are not our own, but we hold onto them with an undying and unrelenting grasp. Instead of holding onto Jesus for dear life, we are holding onto our own thoughts and ideals. We hold onto friends and houses, churches… we hold onto where we are and fight the forward movement. We don’t want to leave but we’re afraid to go. We’re not necessarily wrestling with God, we’re just telling Him not to move us…
But the spiritual life is forward movement, it’s a letting go of self, it’s a giving away and a taking on of a new life, it’s losing our tight grasp on things and grasping onto the cloak of the one who saves us from ourselves…
So ask yourself, what is it that you are holding onto, what is that you just can’t let go of? Release it, take your clenched hands and open them. Then turn around and clench onto Him.
Act as if everything will work out, because it will…