Today (despite a sinus infection that I have successfully beat into submission…I hope) has been a great day…ice on the trees (again), school canceled (again), an out-of-the-blue-have-a-good-day-message from a former student that made me smile and our baby choc lab, Koayah, turned one. She is probably the sweetest, most loving lab that we have ever had and that is saying a lot since all our labs have been loving and wonderful. She loves to fetch ball, run like a more powerful greyhound, swim as fast a merdog, bark ferociously when strangers come to the door, and melt into our bodies whenever she gets the chance. Right now she is gnawing on her birthday bone at my feet and yawning. She will be asleep soon (her big sister, Ryndiyah, is already in her bed snoring). Koay reminds me of all I want to be: “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.” Matt 5:8.
When it comes down to it, that is what Lent is all about —- purifying our hearts and learning what love really is. Rabbi Jesus came to purify the heart of the world – not with the Refiner’s Fire, but with the cool water of the WORD. He was not the steely warrior ready to defeat the Romans or corrupt kings that many expected. He was not the legalistic priest that others expected. He was tempted at least once (Matt 4) but probably many times…just like we all are. It is through testing that we learn to rely on our knowledge, wisdom and faith. And hopefully…at the end of our journey…we will, like my wonderful lab, be touched by a loving hand and hear: “… ‘Well done, good and faithful servant! …Come and share your master’s happiness!’ Matt 25:21