It’s absolutely FREEZING here. Snow on the ground from earlier this week won’t go away. Tonight it will be 5 degrees F (-15 C). Besides drinking copious amounts of hot tea – (i considered giving it up for Lent, but my brother said he & Mama wouldn’t make it if i did. hmmn) – we are actively pursuing various ways to stay warm.
Especially when the wind chill tonight will be well below ZERO DEGREES Fahrenheit. That’s like REALLY cold. This is Virginia (the state.) That might be the norm for the ‘M’ states (& Canada & the North Pole), but we are in the South. We don’t do cold brrizzzy very well.
Last week we traipsed about in short sleeves to a balmy 68 degrees, but the weather this week did not get the memo (to keep that spring-is-almost here thing going.)
sigh. stretching on those extra warm insulated socks & wooly sweaters & cranking up the thermostat… to stay warm.
So here’s a Lenten application: How do you stay warm spiritually when your heart has grown cold?
DESIRE. (it rhymes with ‘fire’ & sounds warm, hot even…)
Every day i ask God to align my desires with HIS desires (as part of the Lord’s Prayer – you can read my how to by clicking here.) But i rarely stop to think about what it means.
DESIRE – DESIRING.
Like ’embrace,’ sometimes desire connotes mushy sentiment vis a viv steamy romance novels (yuck! give me mystery & mayhem…& space battles!)
OK, we don’t want our hearts to be frigid iceboxes (it’s hard to embrace an icicle!) But what does it mean to desire what God desires?
DESIRING — to be holy?
That sounds hard. Like something the saints-were-good-at-kind-of-hard.
God is holy. If we ask to align our desires with His desires, we want to be holy, too.
Have to confess, being holy is not my natural tendency – i’d rather whoop it up on the edges of holiness. (I ask God every day for the gift of Holy Hilarity, but that’s for another post!) I don’t usually ask, “God, please make me holy as You are holy.” (it IS a good idea!) I tend to pray every morning (& throughout the day), “Lord please fill me with Your love anew that I might be Your love anew” – – daily divine dosing (like a morphine drip) is the only way i got thru the 8 year caregiving gig with Papa!
Guess that’s a good part about Lent- it’s a chance to check our Holiness meters. Ask God for high-octane cleanser (powered by the Holy Spirit) to clean out the rubbish in our minds & hearts.
If we perceive desire as spiritual longing – we would want to get rid of the yuck in our lives. Not because judgement crushes us (& makes us down on ourselves & others) with rigid rules & regulations. (Jesus told the Pharisees of His day He desired mercy, not their sanctimonious sacrifices.) But, because we are drawn into the Love of God & we want to become the love of God.
If God is HOLY and God is LOVE. Then, holiness & love are part & parcel of God’s desire for us… & our desire in Him.
So, how do we stay warm spiritually? First, we can ask God for the desire to desire… to BE holy, and to BE love… to BE mercy, grace & peace. Then, how can our hearts remain cold when we see His Passion – Christ on the Cross, the pain on His face – filled with love for us in taking our place.
May Christ’s love empassion us & set our hearts on fire with His holy desire(s).
grace, peace & Spiritual Desire