By Canon Cate Edmonds
I must confess that I have found this Lent very hard to get into. Why I keep asking myself? Could I blame it on the Gaia installation which was a distraction as I was busy with school groups and prayer spaces work or was it just that I didn’t really put my mind fully to it as I have in previous years? But I’m not going to metaphorically, beat myself up, and feel a failure; that would not be helpful.
Reflecting on my Lenten failures while making some soup, thoughts crept into my head as I added an array of different ingredients. I hate wasting food so if there are any leftovers and unused vegetables etc. I make soup. My family laugh at my soups when they ask what is it? I often can’t tell them what it is. All I know is that it’s a tasty soup, so that’s usually what I reply. The different ingredients blend together and make something tasty, nourishing and filling.
I think that is what my Lent has been like so far. There have been some very tasty moments, when a passage of scripture has spoken to me and helped me with something I was struggling with e.g. John 7: “Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgement.” I have been nourished by Lenten reflections, Bishop’s Quiet Days and the words of my colleagues. And each day I feel filled with God’s love in my relationships.
All the ingredients in the soup blend together, not always in equal proportions but they come together, they work together to feed my family and occasionally beyond. There is a harmony in these ingredients. When I looked at Gaia, I often thought wouldn’t it be wonderful if our world could be like my soup where all work together forgetting their differences.
My prayer is in the words of Paul writing to the Ephesians; “With all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another in love, eager to maintain the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit — just as you were called to the one hope that belongs to your call — one Lord, one faith, one baptism,” 4:2-5
As I progress through Lent, I’m not going to worry that it has been and is a bit of a soup, the ingredients will come together and draw me closer to God through Christ’s sacrifice in many different ways and for that I am truly thankful.