Last week we looked at interrupted routines. Routines are like predictable paths. In fact, often they ARE predictable paths. I don’t know about you, but I usually take the same route to and from work every day. I know pretty well how to time the lights along the route so I don’t have to stop. It’s the same with my daily habits. If I don’t have time to do my morning journaling or check the email before work, I feel out of kilter.
Barbara Brown Taylor suggests that there is a spiritual discipline in getting off the regular paths and getting lost “because once you leave the cow path, the unpredictable territory is full of life.” She also says that when you get lost you have the opportunity to “take a good look around to see where you are and what this unexpected development might have to offer you.”
Only, O Lord, in thy dear love,
and help us, this and every day,
Getting lost may just be the recalibration you need. Look back over your life to see where you ‘got lost’ from the path you had plotted out for your life. Taylor says, “the practice of getting lost is both valuable and undervalued…in this culture [where] the point is to get from point A to point B as quickly as possible…doing at least five other things while you are in transit.” Think about where God was in the times you felt lost. If you find yourself ‘lost’ outside your routine this week—look for the Holy in the changed circumstances.
Next week we’ll look at how labeling one another is a way of keeping our norms and routines ‘secure’.
* Quotations from Walking on Water, L’Engle and An Altar in the World, Barbara Brown Taylor, unless otherwise noted.