In recent weeks, the flow of selfishness has been so strong that today – for a few minutes – I felt completely unworthy to be leading in this community. My inability to quell my criticism, my untempered greed. Fortunately, my pride returned me to a sense of self-security, my resilient self-image responsive to the way I numb my spirit if it causes emotional distress.

To want to know the heart of God?
To have mine match?

I’ve learned this. When I am faltering, it’s not my heart that is attacked. It’s my heart’s desire. It’s not my character that is assaulted. It’s my desire to have character. It’s the word “want” tentatively inserted with a quiet question mark that slips in and begins the poison.

When my own passion fades – then I’m the one making the choice to slow the journey. I am not Pilgrim hindered by peril, sword, and beast. I am hindered by self-inflicted leak in my own resolve. I take a rest stop on the path because I want to.

This is how it feels to be held back on a spiritual journey. The spiritual lactic acid. After running 15 miles, you start to wonder why you wanted to run the marathon in the first place. What was the point?

So my response to my heart isn’t to beat it into submission, but to remind it of the God whose unimaginable peace, satisfying justice, love-that-works-right-every-time is ready to make mine more like his. And how I WANT this.