It is a blustery afternoon, nearing the end of the Lenten season. A small patch of blue sky is being swallowed up by a rush of advancing clouds. The air is electric, powered by a pronounced shift in the atmosphere. Nature is in preparation mode. Ground critters have disappeared, finding and burrowing into tiny, carved out shelters. My flowers have retreated to their smallest semblance, their vibrant colors now drained. The sky is randomly tossing around blue-gray pillows. They are quickly darkening.
Underground, fistfuls of fingers are holding on tightly, anchoring plant life to the earth. Above ground, swirling gusts of wind are shoving trees and shrubs around. Leaves, shaken from their branches, fly and rain down on dampened streets, a prelude of what’s to come. And nature, always the opportunist, harnesses all this force to procreate. Free from their protective sacs, tens of thousands of seeds become airborne, jetting to distant fertile grounds. Nature sends burgeoning life off to ride the wind. From the storm, comes rebirth.
It is now Good Friday, and I think of the dark clouds that gathered during the last week of Jesus’ life on earth. Gripped by fear, the believers burrowed down and met secretly in the upper room. And at the last supper, Jesus spoke of things they did not yet understand, preparing them for their ultimate awakening. He would be leaving them, going to the Father and not to be afraid. He would send them the Holy Spirit to empower them to spread the seeds of Good News, to be scattered around the world, landing upon fertile hearts. And from this small room, amid the storm, Christianity was born.
Whatever it is that you ask in my name . . . I will request the Father and he will give you another helper to be with you forever, the spirit of the truth. John 14-16.
Coming into Purpose
It is now several days after Easter and I am still in awe of the transformation that occurred in that upper room, over 2000 years ago. The disciples came into their purpose. As Jesus once said to them, they would go from fishermen to fishers of men. Their purpose would be redefined, not by career or station in life, but by an inner divine spark, ignited by the Holy Spirit. They abandoned their old lives. They woke up and it is this awakening that speaks to me now. I have seen glimpses of it.
I want to know more about coming into my purpose. My meditations, my writings, my journey inform me that there is more. Awakenings can be incremental. Once ignited, there is no turning back, the journey continues.
Adam Brady, from the Deepak Chopra Center, writes about the five stages of spiritual awakening. (See the link below). Brady defines it as a detour from the everyday, materialistic, ego-based existence, to a higher reality of spirit.
Here are the stages of spiritual awakening as defined by Brady:
1. Glimpsing: The call to adventure
2. Closer examination: Choosing a path
3. Seeking: Following the path
4. Loss of sight: Losing the path
5. Seeing: Merging with the path
I do not know what is still hidden from me, but much like a robin hatching its way from its protective shell, I shall keep pecking, catching small glimpses of the light that awaits. With each revelation, there is no turning back. The shell breaks open, and I will emerge in my own upper room: One purpose lived and played out; another beginning.
Thomas Merton, an American Trappist Monk, writer, theologian, mystic, and poet, reminds us that Easter is a celebration of Christ’s victory over death and it is also about our death and resurrection as well.
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 2 Corinthians 5:1
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