Pathways through Lent

A Fun House Palace of Stinging Ironies

Psalm 28:7-11
Genesis 12:1-4
Ephesians 2:11-18
Matthew 10:7-16

“I once knew someone who spent a year in a plaster cast recovering from an operation on his back. He read a lot, and thought a lot, and felt miserable. Later, he realised this time of forced retreat from the world had helped him to understand the world more clearly… Be it through contemplation, prayer, or even keeping a diary, many have found the practice of quiet personal reflection surprisingly rewarding, even discovering greater spiritual depth to their lives.” ~ Queen Elizabeth II, Christmas Speech 2013

Searching and applying for jobs isn’t fun.

Networking and seeking opportunities for gainful employment is a social tightrope that requires time to bear fruit. Being mindful of others’ capacities to help weighs heavily. A person doing all or a combination of these things, with very little money, with great academic degrees, exhausts physically and emotionally. It’s a fun house palace of stinging ironies.

In treasured silence, cherished anonymity, I am this person.

Small inspirations from elderly survivors like the Queen, those closer to home, and a few sympathetic correspondents encourage me to remain steadfast.

Only one “yes” is required.

An uneasy time, I’ve become a recluse, sheltering hopes, dreams, and prayers in a world bombarded with distractions, economic, political, and social uncertainties; my faith remains constant as this too shall pass.

In low energy, entertained by wraiths of dismay, doubt, and foreboding, I breathe deeply before their table invitingly spread with a poisoned chalice; once hopeful strategies abandoned to disarray.

I turn away in prayer that illumines imagination, flights of fancy to count the blessings, flares ablaze upon a youthful world brimming with glittering, polished, and yet unmet dreams.

And, I remember Daniel with the lions: “But the people that do know their God shall be strong, and do exploits.” (Book of Daniel, 11:32 [KJV])

– Anonymous

Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian, Convertable Series, G6-V3, 2010 (mirror and reverse glass painting on plaster and wood, variable size.)
Monir Shahroudy Farmanfarmaian, Convertable Series, G6-V3, 2010 (mirror and reverse glass painting on plaster and wood, variable size.)
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