Over six weeks of Lent I will be reflecting on different ‘rocks’ that we could be moving away for ourselves. The rock being moved away from the tomb on Easter day points to a life of freedom and to life itself. There are rocks in our own lives that we can move for ourselves and sometimes it is fear that prevents us from moving it.
Lent is traditionally a time of giving up something so I’m starting with that thought. Maybe not something like chocolate or alcohol or sugar, but a really testing thing, something that we hold on too tightly to?
There’s a well-known story of a monkey who puts his hand in a jar to take some food but because it’s now made a fist he can’t pull out his fist as well as what he is holding. He finds he is trapped. We sometimes have our hand in the jar and we are not prepared to let go of what we are holding.
What if I give up something that is precious to me?
We probably have no idea of the blessings that are prepared ahead of us for the time when we are willing to let go. But if our hands are empty we are ready to receive something new. That new thing may be totally surprising and it may scare us to let go of what is in our hands for it to be replaced by something that we can’t anticipate or know nothing of.
What are we holding too tightly to? Perhaps we can stop grasping for things that stop us receiving the blessing? What are those things? Power, control, status, money, security or recognition? They are common things for us to hold on to too tightly.
We think we need these things, whereas they’re actually stopping us from receiving a better gift.
A grasping hand cannot be open to receive. The rock that we know can be blocking a better plan, blocking our freedom to receive.
Are we prepared to lose something to receive something else? Maybe the new thing won’t be as significant as what we thought we needed or wanted, but we can never second guess God’s plans. And I generally find that they are better than my own.
He is the ultimate gift giver.
Prayer or Reflection
Lord God, please help me to stop grasping on too tightly to things. Help me to trust, to let go and have hands open to receive your blessing. I want to move that rock that prevents me from receiving from you. Help me not to be fearful of what I might lose, but rather look to you and trust you for what I might gain. Amen