So I’m going about this a little backwards, explaining why I’m starting a blog with this title after I’ve already started posting others. I guess I was too caught up in thinking about Lent, and didn’t want to lose those thoughts before I put them down. Something I have to worry about more these days than I ever did in my 20’s and 30’s – if I don’t write it down, it’s gone!
I have always been touched by the verse early in the book of Luke that records Mary’s response to the incredible birth of Jesus.
But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. Luke 2:19
Her first instinct wasn’t to rush off and tell everyone else, bragging about having just given birth to the Savior of the world. Instead, she took everything in, treasuring her thoughts and experiences, letting them settle deep into her heart. She didn’t react, she responded with what feels to me like a sense of quiet awe.
I think that is what I relate to whenever I hear this verse; there are times when the only response I have is one of quiet awe. Often, like Mary, it has something to do with my kids; at other times it has been in the beauty of creation. There are moments when I am aware of God’s unmistakable presence, and the only response that fits is a grateful silence. When I have, at times, tried to put words to that experience to Chris or a friend, I find words inadequate to describe what I felt; and often feel silly even trying. Maybe it’s because the fullness of that moment was meant to be shared just between me and God; something of great worth for me to treasure.
And, I also believe there are things that are worth working to find words to describe; experiences of God’s lavish love that are meant to be treasured and then shared. I was reminded in the message this morning that our “first love” is the impulse to bring love to the world. A question we were left to ponder: Is there any radical, surprising move that I am to make this Lent season because it reminds the world of God’s love?
For me, putting the words in my heart out there for others to see feels pretty radical. If I can frame it as a way to remind the world of God’s love, maybe it won’t feel quite so vulnerable…or maybe it still will, but I will live!