Bullsh*t to Beatitude
How does the unfruitful fig tree become the burning bush? When we let the divine gardener into our life he invites us to dig in some difficult places. He invites us to soften up parts of ourselves we hardened rather than feel our pain, frustration or grief. The reason we hardened was so that we wouldn’t have to feel that crap in the first place.
But by Lenten slowing down and softening up we can experience our accumulated crap so it can release its transformative power. The Divine gardener asks if he can dig around the unfruitful Fig tree and manure it. Fresh manure is too raw to nourish plants. But in good time the chemistry of the manure is able combine with the soil and moisture and sunlight which gives plants just what they need to thrive.
Our grief contains minerals that we need to thrive.
When the time is right and we are not as raw from our experience then we can start to actually feel the whole range of thoughts and feelings associated with our past difficulties. Like manure something dark like sadness can invigorate us because sadness helps us to let go of things in life. Letting go of things at the right time means there is now room for other things.
Sadness can bring us to the now as it helps us to let go of unrealistic expectations and to accept the actual limitations of our life. Sadness can be a sign that we are accepting the whole truth. There is a saying in recovery work that we can’t heal what we aren’t willing to feel. Sadness that is truly felt will pass in time leaving space for something else.
Discerning a vocation will involve some sadness as choices are eliminated. Truly feeling the sadness that you can’t have or be everything you wish can be humbling or grounding. But once we are “grounded” we can grow and be fruitful.
So, soften the hardened patches of your heart with some sadness these days of Lent and see what liberation that creates within you and what spaciousness remains for God and for others in your life.
By Mark Blom, OMI – Vocation Director OMI Lacombe Canada Province
Feel free to contact Fr. Mark for advice about discernment and vocation direction. He can meet with you by phone to conduct a short vocation assessment to help you find your way. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org to arrange for an appointment.