Wednesday, November 30, 2011
Fr. Vasilli, thank you for the encouragement with regards to the "farm". I still use "farm" in quotes because it's still very much in baby mode. We spent Thanksgiving weekend in Yakima, WA a rural farming community and it really re-inspired my love for that which is self-sufficiency and accomplishing this through farming. I have so much to learn. But am inspired to move forward! If you still would like to chat via email it's susansophia(dot)f(at)gmail(dot)com.
Mimi! Thank you so much! You are a dear and I wish we lived closer! Although you aren't that far away and I can't believe I've never been to Holy Resurrection! I hope we can chat soon!
Xenia...I read your post recently regarding the Women's Retreat and I so dearly wish that I could have been there. One of the reasons is that I long to just chat with you! It really is too bad that it was butted up against the OCA AAC. Next year!
Thank you all. I can't believe people still read this. I have so little to say anymore. But I am truly blessed by this little online connection. Please keep in touch.
If I can't have my Orthodox Intentional Community than this will certainly do. Love to hear form you all.
Friday, November 04, 2011
I find the need to be real. One of the real dangers of the internet and creating a journal online or being a part of FB (aka. the Passion Pit) is that we often times don't show the world our true self. We often, without realizing it, only show our best days, or even that which we wish we could have. Oh I know you all know of this danger. It's really old news that we've all talked about before. It's safe to show the best. We know no one will think ill of us. But I don't think we intentionally only show our best and today I feel the need to be real. Mostly I hope to find that maybe, just maybe, I will find that I am not alone. Deep down inside I know that I am not alone, but it's hard to see that.
I've become increasingly aware of the fact that I have lived a profoundly pharisaical life. I looked up the word hypocrite:
Definition of HYPOCRITE
: a person who puts on a false appearance of virtue or religion
: a person who acts in contradiction to his or her stated beliefs or feelings
Yep, that's me.
I'm sure many others have known this about me for quite some time, but for me to fully grasp this has taken, well, all my life. The scales have slowly fallen from my eyes and it's not pretty and rather painful to see how hypocritical I've lived.
I remember almost 2 years ago when I was helping someone homeschool another family. They came into my home every day to do school with us. It was one of the hardest things in the world for me because suddenly my safe haven was taken away from me. The place I felt I could be free to be who I was and suddenly I had to be "perfect" even in my own home. Talk about facades. That's the time the first set of scales fell off.
But most recently the scales have fallen off to reveal the hypocrisy of something completely different but hypocrisy nonetheless. It doesn't really matter what it is but just the fact that I have this whole set of beliefs that I profess but do not live my life according to those beliefs.
It makes it difficult for those around me to respect and trust me. And this is truly the most painful thing that one can open their eyes to. But I believe it is one of the best.
There is a song by BarlowGirl called “I need you to love me” and it has really ministered to my empty heart lately. The first verse says…
Why? Why are you still here with me?
Didn’t you see what I’ve done?
In my shame I want to run,
And hide myself.
Yeah, but it’s here I see the truth,
I don’t deserve you.
The line I bolded is exactly what I was talking about. It is the pain that we feel that opens our eyes to the truth. And with truth, hopefully, comes growth.
By finally seeing the truth I pray that I can finally, with a trueness not seen before, bow before God as the publican did. “And the publican, standing afar off, would not lift up so much as his eyes unto heaven, but smote upon his breast, saying, God be merciful to me a sinner.”
Kontakion, tone 4: Let us avoid the proud speaking of the Pharisee and learn humility from the groans of the Publican, and let us cry in penitence: O Saviour of the world, be merciful to Thy servants.