Consolation: (from A Letter of Consolation)
“There is a much more human option to reevaluate the past as a continuing challenge to surrender ourselves to an unknown future.” I know that Anna Blanch does this formally every year, and this piece caught my eye a few minutes ago:
But as we ritually look forward, do we sometimes neglect to spend enough time looking back? Reflecting on the past year – thinking not only about the things that went badly and might provoke change, but also those moments of joy, success and learning? Do you do that? I know I don’t do it nearly enough. I certainly don’t dwell on the many clear instances of God’s goodness. The final few days of the year provide a perfect opportunity to give some serious thought to the lessons of the year – to remember where God has been at work in us, and even to recall the times when he has seemed silent. Martin Saunders, Youthwork Magazine Blog
“We can see that a growing surrender to the unknown is a sign of spiritual maturity and does not take away autonomy”. Trying to understand what he’s saying in other bits attempting some paraphrasing: In surrendering ourselves we leave ourselves free to be guided, knowing that there is more ahead in our lives, in which we can do many important things & if a loved one dies allows us more freedom [not sure I like that bit – but then like is not always best]. Certainly giving up Winchester/so many friends there has left me free to pursue what I believe I’m supposed to be doing in Durham, creating a new circle of friends ..
The Cinch of Discipleship: John 21:18
International Standard Version (©2012)
“Truly, I tell you emphatically, when you were young, you would fasten your belt and go wherever you liked. But when you get old, you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will fasten your belt and take you where you don’t want to go.
Prayer: “Let us firmly believe that the paths you point out to us are the ones we must take.” Reminds me (again) of bits of Narnia that I’ve been reading – when children ask Aslan what would have happened if they had made a different choice, and he says that is not for them to know – they have made their choice and has been put on that path (they are not puppets – he guides, but does not force, and they take the consequences, but he is with/alongside them whatever their choice).
Christmas Action: Thank God for the giftedness & company of another…
Now let me check out Pam’s post…