Institutions have archives - and individuals do, too.
My personal archives go deep into my past, their vaults and drawers holding the history of my life. Some reflection on this might help this Lent as I pray to come back to the Lord with all my heart...
How often do I consult the archives of my life's story?
When I go to my heart's archives, what do I find there?
Have I locked up some files that need to see the light of day?
files that need to be aired in the mercy of God's healing?
What file in my personal archives am I slow to look at?
Are there entries in my archives I need to bring to prayer,
to my conversation with the Lord?
Do I find that some of my archival records need reconciling?
Have I a tendency to consult only the archives of my disappointments?
Are there archives of joy I need to open again,
to read, to remember and enjoy?
Do I need to ask God's help to search out the records of joy?
Might I ask God's Spirit to help me open what I need to see again
and to put away, finally, what I no longer need to consult?
When I go to my personal archives,
do I remember that what's stored there is history?
that I live in the present moment?
that I need not be chained to the past?
Do I read and trace in the files of my archives
the story of how God has always been with me,
even and especially in those times
when I may have thought God had forgotten me?
Have I found the files that tell the story
of my faith, my endurance, my desire to grow and to live?
Have I read the files that tell the stories
of those who've loved me, cared for me, watched out for me?
Have I accepted how God already knows
everything stored in my archives (the good and the bad)
and loves me still, wanting always
to forgive, heal, refresh and restore me to his heart?
Were I to choose one file from my archives
to bring to God in prayer today,
what file would that be?
Do I trust that with compassion and understanding
the Lord will help me with whatever I share with him
from the archives of my heart and mind and soul?
Lord, give me the grace and courage
to open the archives of my life's story
and to find in them the story of your love for me...
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