Hesychia: Day 6, Week 1

Well, it’s Friday.  I made it through the first week of the program!  I’m very proud of myself, especially considering I was ready to pack up and head home after the first day of class.

Perseverance.

What came up today that I most want to reflect on is my earliest memory of encountering God.  I remember distinctly.

I was very young, maybe four or five, and I was very angry.  I’m not sure why, but my suspicion is that I was in time out or pouting after not getting my way.  Whatever it was, I have this sense that I was certainly not in a spiritual place.  I was full of emotion and sat on the floor of my bedroom sobbing into the bed skirt around the edge of my little twin bed.  The bed skirt had little white and pink flowers on it and matched the bedspread and the curtains on the window.  I was feeling unfairly punished or frustrated or misunderstood.  Whatever it was, I was in a very broken moment of my young life.

As I sat there with my face buried in the bed skirt, I experienced in a very tangible and physical way, that I was being held.  I literally felt God behind me, surrounding me, comforting me.  I remember very clearly how I slowly relaxed into that tangible presence.  My tears subsided. My breathing normalized.  It was going to be okay (whatever it was).  God was with me.

I spent years searching for that experience of God again.  I held onto it in moments when I was sure God did not exist, or if God indeed existed, was not interested in me.  I held onto it in the moments when I was broken and laid waste inside, knowing that it was possible to experience God the way I longed for and trusting that I would find God again if I just kept searching.

A lot has happened since that first moment when I knew for myself that God was real and personal and good.  As my conception of God changes and is shaped by the ideas and people I encounter on my journey, I hold on to that first moment, that first truth that I received all on my own.

I hold on to God because God first held onto me.

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