“As they led him away they took hold of a certain Simon, a Cyrenian, who was coming from the country; and after laying the cross on him, they made him carry it behind Jesus.” Luke 23:26
Did Simon have a choice? At certain times in my life, I resented the cross, I lamented my cross and I questioned the pain and burdens thrust on me.
I invite you to rest and take a spiritual walk with me as I prepare to enter this Lenten season of reflection with an expectation of deeper intimacy, fresh faith, and a heart even more open to what God is calling me into. It’s one way I can embrace and listen to my soul’s calling.
The noise of the world distracts me and it’s easy to lose focus. Before I can take that first step, I must put the constant consumption and creating, the endless rushing and reacting and the daily busyness behind me.
Like all journeys, I’m uncertain. I ask myself a million and one questions. Am I heading in the right direction? Do I know where I’m going? Is this a good idea? What are the consequences?
I console myself with the thought that this is a spiritual journey, not a physical one. Does it mean that is it easier?
I took a pilgrimage to Jerusalem in May 2019. I had the opportunity to walk the Via Dolorosa, the path that Jesus would have taken on his way to his crucifixion. Growing up I visualized Jesus, beaten and bloodied as he staggered on a flat road, burdened with a heavy cross. I always thought it was too much for one person to bear. My heart broke at the reality.
My spiritual path is also not smooth. It is uphill, just like the road to Calvary. Stay with me as I take a route with different twist and turns – my spiritual Via Dolorosa. This road has ups and downs, starts and stops, hopes and disappointments, fear and faith, questions and answers, joy and pain, promises yet to be fulfilled. It’s a time of remembering, a time to correct some previous poor choices. Some encounters along the way may cause deep and lasting pain and some people who might not understand could be cruel and uncaring.
I’m starting this journey laden by my sin. My once perfect and beautiful soul is disfigured by my mistakes and by the choices I made. Choices that didn’t honor God. Instead, they offended Him. It’s difficult to embrace my pain and suffering. I silently weep for my brokenness, for my failings and for the pain I caused. Again and again, I faltered, I fell and sinned. And He pardoned me every time. Now I’m asking for His help in carrying my cross with patience and resignation.
Are you still with me?
Walk besides me as I step on the path, as I step out into the light with confidence. I walk to restore my soul. I walk so that my heart will always be with God. I hope for the faith to entrust my life to Him.
The path I start out on may not be the path I want to end on. But one thing I know for sure. Jesus was thinking of me before he died. He was thinking of what I would be going through this year, this month, this day. He’s calling me to love, to turn my hurt to compassion, understanding and profound peace.
Thank you for walking with me. Thank you for stepping out in faith and trust in God.
Where do you want to be at the end of the journey?
Wait to see what God does next.