This was last week’s reflection from our parkology lent series (if you’re interested in following some of the series, you can find it over on the parkology blog)
I’ve just had one of those big days today – my first interview for a teaching post. That’s a heck of a lot to think about when I’m still just focusing on getting qualified! Anyway, it didn’t quite pan out and although getting very close, I didn’t get the job. There’s part of me that is immensely frustrated because of all the hard work that went into preparing and delivering everything we had to do today…but the more I think about it, the more I realise that how I respond to disappointment expresses who I am and what I believe just as much as how I act when things go my way.
Part of my journey in recent years has being embracing disappointment within my faith and learning to live it. Those times when we pray and nothing happens. Those times when all we experience is that ‘dark night of the soul’. When the vibrancy and excitement turns into the harsh tred of everyday life.
I suppose what I might be trying to articulate here is that even if we’re not having an awesome lenten experience, then that’s ok. Perhaps we might have expected something incredible to happen – and perhaps for some of us it has. However, what I want to affirm is that it’s ok to be a little disappointed, and actually, how we respond to this might well define whether our faith stands on firm ground or sinking sand. What also matters is that we find ways to express our disappointment and frustration within our communities, and learn how to walk well in these moments.
Today – how about spending some time with a dear friend expressing how this lenten journey is going? Sharing the highs and the lows, the good stuff and the rubbish. If you have disappointment, it’s an important part of the journey for everyone to hear them expressed. That’s what the Psalms are all about, after all.
So – grab a pint, pick up the phone, sit down and talk, write a letter or email or text. Whatever. Let’s share with each other what’s happening.
p.s. sorry if this is a bit of a downer! I’m ok, and all is well. But it’s been helpful to write this to you!