Holy Land 2023 (Penny)

Blue prayer shawl on rock

Confession, While Waiting

On our last morning in Galilee, it was as if God gave me a prayer shawl. I suspected I was going to need one, mostly in Jerusalem, so I could wear it at times to show respect. I was on the lookout to buy.

I was up early enough to watch the sunrise on that last day by the lake where Jesus had ministered and healed. As I approached the lakeshore I saw the blue fabric neatly folded, lying there on a rock. Recognizing someone had mistakenly left it there, I decided to leave it too, until it was almost time for our bus to leave, that is. While I felt awkward taking it, just simply accepting this gift, I acted against my faltering nature thinking I was stealing away with something. While it seemed to be made for me, and even free, I was definitely messing with the ease of it.

Frankly, now, on another very early morning, I feel unsettled again. Not stuck, really, but in between. Today we go to Emmaus. Thank the Good Lord, I know what happens next. On one level, I ache amidst all this teeming humanity. Will I once again accept this fantastic gift of faith? Over and over again, here on this pilgrimage, God has shown up in big and small ways, blessing me. And yet, I pause…hold back. I ask myself:

Will I have enough energy?

Enough clean clothes?

Even enough money (for God’s sake!)?

From this place it is slightly easier to imagine the disciples, the women. Only human…all of us. The waiting is killing me.

And that brings me back around to yesterday’s long, long line as we waited at the foot of the cross at Holy Sepulchre…waited for our turn to bow.

I didn’t know it then but, God, the Ineffable, gave me this sweet shawl for company through another long night and finally dawning morning. Maybe it will help to just go wrap myself in it and keep moving forward, one footstep at a time.

Holy God, Holy and mighty, Holy immortal one, Have mercy upon us.

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