So, my birthday came and went. I turned 45. Just throwing the number out there…not because it means anything but so you have a point of reference. I have never really cared about age. Ever since I was 28, I just kind of stayed 28 in my mind. To help this perpetual 28 year old-ness, I try not to look in the mirror too much. I’m just saying, it can be shocking to your 28 year old insides to see your 45 year old outsides.
I felt a little sad this year. I’m not going to lie. I felt a little, shall we say, melancholy. I looked up melancholy in the dictionary because I’ve always loved that word. It says: soberly thoughtful; pensive and it also says sad and mournful and depressed which is not what I was feeling. I’ve always appreciated the word because to me, it described the feeling we sometimes have of being a mixture of happy and sad. I was feeling that mixture of happy and sad. Like when I used to swing on my swing in the backyard and I would lay on my stomach to feel that feeling you get when you are excited but yet feel like crying. I would do this on purpose. I’ve always sort of enjoyed the melancholy.
I guess the thing that really got to me this year is that it was a year of transformation for me. A year of freedom and joy and renewed passion and purpose.
And what this says to me is that GOD CAN DO ANYTHING AT ANY TIME NO MATTER HOW OLD YOU ARE.
On Good Friday, I taught a Holy Yoga class. It was my regular Holy Yoga class time but it was Good Friday so that changes everything. I woke up and I felt God calling me to PREACH IT. I felt this overwhelming need to get on my knees and thank Him for His sacrifice. I couldn’t even stand it people. I was bawling reading scripture that morning. I was newly taken with the story I have known forever. I was nearer and closer to Jesus because I LET HIM IN this year.
He didn’t change. But He changed me.
So, little beknownst to me (is that a word?) my awesome friend and owner of the home where I teach Holy Yoga, Eileen, planned a surprise for me by making sure a lot of people could make it to class and stay for coffee afterwards to celebrate my birthday and my one year Holy Yoga anniversary. I mean. Oh my gosh. Each person that came into the room just blew me away. There was this keen awareness of how blessedly important every person in my life is. How each one of these lovely women has ministered to me, has fed my soul, has nourished me and supported me and given me strength. I mean, it was almost too much. My spidey senses were up and I already told you I felt like preaching and tears were flowing freely so you know what happened next. What happened next had nothing to do with me…it was like we rolled out our mats and created space and let God do His thing and…
Holy yoga was HOLY.
I was pounding the floor talking about IT IS FINISHED. We were LAYING IT DOWN AT THE FOOT OF THE CROSS.
You know, I don’t really give a hoot about denomination. I think God weeps at the way we separate ourselves along man made lines and judge each other. I think it’s nuts. But I have to bring it up in this regard. It’s funny because every single person in the room – I’d say there were about 16 or 17 people- every one of us was raised Catholic. Now I only mention this because there are a few things the Catholics do like nobody else in my opinion.
One: Funerals. Two: Good Friday.
I mean, we can mourn and weep and feel loss and regret like nobody’s business.
We can SUFFER.
Now usually, I like to focus on the happy and the positive and the hopeful. My mom, who was not raised Catholic used to ask not so subtly, “Why all of this emphasis on the crucifixion? It’s all about the Resurrection.” And I get that, I do. I’m a resurrection girl for sure. But we can’t have Sunday without Friday. Amen?
I have no idea what I said during that Holy Yoga class but I know it was from my heart and my heart was feeling the Holy Spirit that day. It was the end of the birthday week, the melancholy, the pensiveness. I was laying it down.
When I think about it, it makes perfect sense. I had an AHA moment. His Death and Resurrection reminded me of my own. Of my many.
This is a holy practice, right? To not rush to Easter Sunday. To sit on Friday in the pain and pound our fists and weep and mourn and remember. And then to sit on Saturday and wait. To have nothing happen. To be bored and wander around not knowing what’s coming. To wonder.
Our need to rush to Sunday kind of stunts us. It denies us the feeling we need to feel…that death and birth are painful. They are transformational…but we have to let ourselves experience them in their entirety without sugar coating or rushing it along.
I don’t have to make it “all good” all the time. Not for me, not for my friends, not for my kids. It is what it is. Happy and sad. New and old. 28 and 45. Death and Resurrection. Sorrow and Joy. Pounding fists and dancing feet. There is love in both and all and every.
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