This morning I was sitting in my favourite spot drinking coffee and having some quiet time with God. One of our assignments this week is to imagine what a sanctuary for us would look like. Last night I was doing that and most of what I would have in my sanctuary is from the outdoors – grass, trees, a mountain stream, etc. I also would have a comfy big chair and a good light for reading. Now I think I should add a really good cup of Bison quality coffee. I enjoy coffee, the flavour, the warmth and probably the caffeine.
I generally pray the morning office from The Divine Hours by Phyllis Tickle, and did so this morning. Lately, I have been breaking just before the Lord’s Prayer and reading a Psalm and a passage from the gospels. I know she has portions of psalms and Gospel readings already in there but it seems like not enough. I was contemplating the words of the Lord’s Prayer “Forgive me my sins as I forgive those who sin against me” and then picked up the book I am reviewing next for the course, Women at the Well by Kathleen Fischer.
Her words in the introduction speak of the “pervasive…results of sexism” in women’s lives. Instantly, into my mind leapt the memory of an incident I had. A colleague who did not agree with the way I wished to practice put me down using the term “sweetie” as he addressed me. That doesn’t sound much like an insult does it but I was not a sweetie to him. In fact I was his senior and had more experience in my field than he did. I have never really forgiven him.
It is the fact that I have never really forgiven him that God seemed to be confronting me with. Why, I don’t know. I mean, why would God care? The guy insulted me and was trying to put me down as “only a woman” who was out of touch with the realities of the profession, that the “boys” were really the ones who made the rules.
Sometimes God digs in there where it still hurts. He squeezes as he moulds me to his own image. He makes me stop and pay attention to what he really said.
Words can have a lasting effect. Wonder what words I have said that hurt in much the same way?
Jesus Christ, Son of God, have mercy on me a sinner.