I knew that I was right.
I was so self-assured in fact, that I told myself I definitely didn’t need to bring it to the Lord. I ignored the whisper of doubt and pointed to everyone and everything in my echo chamber who agreed, happily feeding myself on a diet thick with the “leaven of the Pharisees” (Mark 8:15).
That is, until the day a spiritual master’s words stopped me short. “If the understanding, the searchlight of the soul, which alone can discover and rectify the vanity of the human heart, is itself swollen and blinded with pride, who is able to cure it?” (Dom Lorenzo Scupoli, The Spiritual Combat).
Gradually, it sunk in. “Lord,” I began to pray haltingly, “You have permission. Change my mind if You need to. Correct my course if I’m wrong.”
The change was surprisingly swift, yet instead of bowing me in shame like I feared, it lifted me in freedom and hope.
Often, we go into Lent blinded by worldly “leaven,” with grandiose plans for improvement based on our supposed expert understanding of ourselves. We make Lent about us and our self-sufficiency instead of uniting ourselves in repentance to the Lord’s loving heart.
God never restricts His love for us, but our sin restricts our ability to receive it in a thousand different ways. We stubbornly cling to “our way” instead of His divine wisdom and will. We choose temporary pleasure over never-ending joy with Him. We seek others’ conditional admiration over His limitless, sacrificial love.
This is why we need real Lent and repentance. Inviting God’s way gently dismantles our restrictive defenses and opens us to His purifying, healing, freeing love.
Have you been feeding on the leaven of the world so long you hardly even realize it?
Take courage—He knows you even better than you know yourself, and He loves you far greater than you could hope.
Invite Him to guide your understanding. Ask Him to course-correct you when needed. Trust Him to lead you in real repentance.
And sister? Don’t be surprised when you find yourself flying free in the depths of His mercy.He loves you far greater than you could hope. // @megan_hjelmstad Click To Tweet
What’s the “your way” you’re clinging to? How can you let go of it this Lent?
Thank you for being here.
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