On day two into self-examination I make a discovery.
I discover that am a self-preservationist and a solitude seeker.
I’m all about staying alive. Especially in a vehicle of any kind. Car, plane, rollercoaster.
I also have a deep need for alone-ness. I have a deep need for my own place.
The first is birthed out of trauma, the other is just plain hard-wiring.
I would scarcely know myself without them.
This is the examen of consciousness.
It is discovering what is most true about you and recognizing that God is there with you in the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Just yesterday I discovered that my demand for self-preservation and alone-ness hurt someone I loved. My not wanting to be infringed upon infringed upon someone else. I didn’t know it at the time. Because God comes into the abyss with me, now I do.
Where can I go from your Spirit? Where can I flee from your presence?
Pretty much nowhere. There is nowhere I can go that God does not go with me.
“Through the faithful practice of the discipline of self-examination we begin to discover, as the psalmist did, that even those places within us that feel very dark and uninhabitable are places where God’s presence is real.” Ruth Haley Barton in Sacred Rhythms
It can be a harsh wind sometimes, this business of self-discovery.
When these dark and unhabitable places, these desert places of my soul become all I that can see, I must remember this… Jesus always goes into the desert.
I must remember a March wind always precedes an April Spring.