Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Just show up

Not surprisingly, Easter has me thinking about resurrection; not necessarily THE resurrection, but resurrection as a concept and in my own life. Sunday, in my Quaker worship, someone spoke of the surrender that must first accompany this return from the dead. And, I don’t think resurrection is synonymous with re-birth.

Birds call out my sunlit studio window this morning, reminding me of the earth’s return from the last-hoorah decay of autumn and the frosty, hibernation of winter.

I asked Spirit specifically Sunday to show me my resurrection. I feel as if I am thawing from 15 years of a numb lifeless state as my fibromyalgia has diminished. Could this be my resurrection? Of course, just as surely as I publicly made this claim, I hustled into the chiropractor – I had waited three months because I was doing so well – to let it rip, my body felt ready. Did it comply! My neck never moved so much. Two-and-a-half weeks later, I am still not back to where I was. Half step back, two steps forward, I hope

Part of my transformation may be physical. Part, I’m thinking a hefty chuck, is psychological: a deep attitude shift. I am tired of living in the negative, the place of what I can’t or shouldn’t do, limiting myself because I don’t know whether my body will hold up, that my mind will be clear enough or the pain too intense to work through. That’s 15 years of layers.

What more can I surrender? I ask God. I’ve given you my body and spirit. Then I realize, it’s my mind. I desperately need God to perform some spiritual cognitive behavior therapy, righting what has become all twisted in and by dis-ease.

Living though the last couple of weeks I did fall into the numbness of fighting pain, but to a much lesser degree than I have previously. I didn’t totally close down and shut off. Yes, I did contract myself and forgot to continuously breathe deeply, but I became aware of it and have since corrected those behaviors.

All because some little voice said give it time; it will work. And I trust that voice.

So my goal is to surrender my mind as much as possible, but not to punish myself when I don’t: that’s part of the trap. I haven’t a clue where my thinking and Spirit’s intervention meet.

I do, however, have experience with patience and discernment. Perhaps too much.

Recently, I have been antsy to launch a spiritual-nurture group in my studio. Something I’ve wanted to do since I moved in, but held off as the energy surged around Artsy Fartsy, the non-profit arts exploration for under-served kids in my neighborhood.

Why, then, am I more afraid of doing this group publicly (I’ve led similar work in Quaker circles for years) than starting something I’d never done from scratch? Because it seems, in my mind, personally riskier. This is about using my experience to tap into the experience of others. I advertised as best I knew how and have no idea if anyone will show. I have two yeses and a couple of maybes on facebook, but who knows how accurate that is. That’s my old brain thinking. My new one, the one directly connected to the heart, says it doesn’t matter. Being faithful by showing up and welcoming whomever does come, even if only one, is my mission. God has taught me before that numbers don’t matter. Surrender.

I have learned from Artsy Fartsy that Spirit-led things tend to grow organically and unlike anything we experience in the secular world. Maybe this isn’t even about Thursday or any of the next seven. Maybe it’s about my willingness to listen to a calling and do it … with no expectation of outcome.

Just show up. If I can do that, then it is radical resurrection for me. I am prayerful that I can fully live into this task.

• What does resurrection mean to me?
• How have I personally experienced it?
• What role does surrender play?
• When I have surrendered, what change – if any – has taken place?
• What is my specific prayer for resurrection in my own life?

Jesus on the cross
in my face
is, almost,

to the point of

I envy those
for whom it
has a personal

and, yet, I am
to become
acquainted with

taken in steps:

surrender, first
the rest, I trust,
will follow


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