“For to see your face is like seeing the face of God” - Jacob to Esau, Genesis 33:10
Last week I shared part one of a spiritual practice that really changed how I move through Lent. This week, I am sharing part two. I love part two! Part two is actually the thing I look most forward to! In part one we deal with ourselves.
In part two we deal with ourselves and others.
Just like in part one, set aside some time, offer the time up to the Lord and be quiet. Listen.
Now, here’s the big change - bring one person that is close to you to mind. This could be a spouse, a child, a friend, a co-worker. Give God the space to speak to your heart about this person.
Allow God to show you things about your relationship with this person. Maybe you realize you’ve been harsh with them lately or that you have not made time for them or maybe you’ll see things that you missed, signs that they are struggling or in need. Once these things come to your mind, offer them to the Lord. Ask for forgiveness and for strength to do better.
Like in part one, continue to sit in silence, listening. When given the space, what always happens to me is that I am given a new love or a feeling of understanding for that person. I get ideas about ways that I can reach out to them and I actually feel excited about doing those things!
Through the silence, I am given an opportunity to reconcile with those that I love or am struggling with, to really meaningfully connect.
It reminds me of Jacob, late in life, wanting to return to the land of his fathers except there is this huge problem, he will have to face Esau, his brother, whom he cruelly betrayed. Jacob sends all kinds of gifts ahead of him, hoping that Esau might receive him. As Jacob approaches Esau, Esau runs to meet him and embraces him. It is in this moment of reconciliation that Jacob says, “seeing you is like seeing the face of God”.
During this season of Lent, let us repent of our thoughtlessness towards others, and let us be RECONCILED one to another so that we might see the face of God.