Saturday, 13 February 2016

Leaning Into Lent: Day 4—Heart Smart Leaning

“You are from dust,” I was told on Ash Wednesday, “and to dust you shall return.” Of the earth. Earthy. Mortal. A sinner from my mother’s womb. Not only that. Today’s St James Devotional Guide Jeremiah reading reminds me that I have one of these:
The heart is deceitful above all things,
and desperately sick;
who can understand it? [Jer 17.9 (ESV)]
Deceitful above all things, sick, incomprehensible, yet it is that, all of with which, I am to love the Lord my God. It must be possible.

How?

…by believing this opening prayer of thanksgiving in Evening Prayer:
In the darkness of our sin you have shone in our hearts
to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God
in the face of Jesus Christ.
…and whenever the shining in my heart is dulled by deceitfulness so I find my belief wavering, that I remember this from the Psalm for Evening Prayer:
When my heart became embittered
and I was pierced to the quick,
I was but foolish and ignorant;
I was like a brute beast in your presence.
Yet I am always with you;
you hold me by my right hand. (Ps 73.21-23—in Evening Prayer according to the Church of England Daily Prayer app)
I am always with him. Applying my soul, strength and mind to observing a hearty and Holy Lent systematically and with discipline can only draw me closer and make this a true statement:
Upon you have I leaned from my birth,
when you drew me from my mother’s womb; •
my praise shall be always of you. (Ps 71.6—in CofE Morning Prayer)
I just need to keep leaning in the right direction and on the right person. After all, it is good for me to draw near to God (Ps 73.28).