There’s a slight melancholy settled deep in my bones these last few days and I’m having trouble shaking it.
It’s nothing earth-shattering, just a dull ache that I can’t quite identify.
It could be homesickness. The past few weeks have been busy, stressful ones, and I feel as if I’ve only been home to sleep and eat. The schedule will lighten up soon.
But maybe it’s something more.
Maybe the melancholy comes from a soul place, the part of my inner being still longing for resurrection.
Because Lent isn’t over yet.
The end is so close you can almost reach out and touch it, and yet the darkest days are still to come.
The passover, the remembrance, the Good Friday of crucifixion and the lonely waiting, the wondering distress, the questioning, “Did God really mean what he said?”
Sun shines bright through my window as I write these words and the earth is in early bloom all around me. I walked through the garden section of Walmart and smelled lilies, strong and fragrant, gazed upon pastel colors and reminders of new life everywhere.
And yet I feel cold and still and small, like a seed planted in damp earth, a late bloomer curled up tight, not quite ready to reach for the light.
Spring blows in like a lion, but I’m never prepared. So it is with this week.
I need the comfort of knowing that all is not in vain, that there truly is meaning, purpose, wonder in all of it.
This morning as I read Romans 12, I hear the apostle Paul telling how we are to offer ourselves — the very lifeblood and pulse of our physical bodies — as living sacrifices. This is to be our act of worship.
When You Have Nothing Useful to Give
I’ve always believed I have so little to offer. What is there here in my hand but figurative crumbs of leftover loaves of stale bread? Perhaps a small fish or two.
And yet there’s no mistaking the message here:
Give it anyway.
So here’s what I want you to do, God helping you: Take your everyday, ordinary life—your sleeping, eating, going-to-work, and walking-around life—and place it before God as an offering. Embracing what God does for you is the best thing you can do for him.” Romans 12:1 MSG
So even in these pensive days, mornings when I’m so tired I can’t keep my eyes open, evenings when I feel an ache in my soul and can’t tell what’s causing it, days when I instinctively know I was made for something more but it always seems to be just out of my grasp. . . this is what I’m to do.
Offer what I have.
Hold open my hands with these crumbs of ordinary life, and lay it on the altar at the very feet of God.
If all I have is the simple business of living, of getting through the day, then it is what I present — my bodily, living self as an act of worship.
- If your heart feels broken, give him the pieces.
- If your soul feels empty, give him the empty space.
- If your body feels weary, give him the long sigh as your head hits the pillow.
This is a life, God. It’s all I have.
It might not be much in the world’s eyes, but it is what you have given and I am grateful.
And so I hold it out before you, in all its mundane glory, to shape and to do with as you wish.
I lay it at your feet, bury it here in the dust.
And wait expectantly for resurrection.
What can you offer today as your living sacrifice? How are you feeling in this last week of Lent, as we walk toward the crucifixion? What sort of spiritual renewal do you hope this Easter will bring? Won’t you share your thoughts in the comments below?
I’m linking this post up today with Bonnie Gray over at Faith Barista for her #OneWordCoffee #OneWordLent series and with Jennifer Dukes Lee for #TellHisStory. Click on the links below to see what other bloggers are writing about.