Thursday, June 05, 2014

Scary Changes

Today's piece of the Pentecost sequence:

Bend the stubborn heart and will
Melt the frozen, warm the chill
Guide the steps that go astray

Flecte quod est rigidum
Fove quod est frigidum
Rege quod est devium

So, sorta like this: Bend that which is rigid, warm that which is cold, make true that which has gone wrong.

I don't know about you, but I have been Queen of Rigid, Cold and Wrong. Empress, really.

Sometimes there is nothing scarier than the Holy Spirit bending you when you are rigid. Because really and truly, if you are actually able to discern that it is the Holy Spirit who is acting, you really think He is completely messing up your life. That rigidity is security. It's a standard. It feels so righteous. Well, except for the joyless, pained and isolated parts. Butthosearesoeasytoignore! Because, security!

When we trade our humanity for security, we are in big trouble.

And when God warms us? Another potential for confusion! Warmness entails nearness, and, dear me, nearness activates all sorts of puritanical fears. Too much warmness, and there might be a fire! We might really get purified!

What if our steps leave the path we are used to, even if our normal is just a weenzie bit wrong? Heck, we could end up anywhere if we open up to course correction. See earlier complaint about security.

But in this prayer we beg for the changes we might not even recognize we need. For Jesus to be Lord of my life means that I put my life at the disposal of the Holy Spirit to be refashioned until I look like Jesus. That will require a lifetime of course corrections, meltings and bendings. This is where trust come in. We've got to trust God's perspective. This is also where meditating on Scripture comes in! We need to know what Jesus looks like, so that shock of what the Holy Spirit sets out to do doesn't blow us out of the water. This is also where prayer comes in, so we can discuss with the Lord all the anxiety that sanctification provokes.

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