Monday, April 25, 2011

"Why seek ye the living among the dead?" "Yeah, why would you do that?"

I celebrated this Pascha at St. Stephen's in Crawfordsville, my hometown, with all of my siblings, my husband, and many people dear to me from my childhood. First time all around, since I have always celebrated Pascha at St. Juliana's in Santa Fe, away from my family, and I have never been married to my husband before.

Somehow this Lent was harder than ever. Part of this might be due to my spiritual laziness in College. This year, nothing distracted me as much as school always did, so it was necessary to confront my noetic flab. At school, it's easy to forget the fast and just get drunk after class with your friends ("Totally vegan!"), or haughtily distance yourself from everyone else when you actually do happen to keep the physical fast. Here at home, living with my family, who are God-fearing but not fast-keeping, the retreat from human warmth was more painful. I could not ignore them, and my grumpiness and holier-than-thou attitude hurt others more.

Being married also made it quite different. Partnership is beautiful, but it is a fearful thing to bind your salvation to someone else's. I don't always want to pray, and neither does he. It's rare that we want to do it at the same time, and difficult to broach the subject without feeling like a nag. It's hard enough to clearly see my relation to God. Adding a third body makes the equation exponentially more complex.


"... the more there are there who say 'ours',
so much the more of good is owned by each.
...the more souls, hearts set on high, there be,
more are there to love well and more are loved:
and mirror-like, they give back mutually."

Two-body problem is graceful, three body problem is real.

So, Lent was hard. My stomach kept the fast but my heart did not. I did not repent "enough". When I glimpsed (but never grasped) repentance, it hurt too much, and I conveniently let my mind wander from the gruesome sight. I sold Christ many times over, and I did not even go out and weep bitterly.

But... but... you know how the story ends, and then begins, and then goes on forever. Wake up!

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