You desire truth in the inward being; therefore teach me wisdom in my secret heart. Psalm 51:6
Today I remember to pace myself. As I climbed the long steep staircase to the lighthouse I notice that there were first a number of steps and then a short plateau to walk across, and then a number of steps, and then another short plateau with maybe a bench to rest, and then another number of steps until about halfway up I encountered a large resting place with a butterfly garden. As I looked at the barren garden in anticipation of summer when it would be filled with butterflies, I was grateful for the rest. I could not have climbed the entire staircase all at once; had I tried I would have collapsed. Some very thoughtful person obviously realized this too, and created a garden for those making their way to the lighthouse. Then it struck me. That is how this Lenten journey works too. As we traverse this 40 days making our way toward the light, we climb for a bit, then we plateau for a stretch, we climb some more, plateau for another stretch, maybe find a few strategically located benches to rest on, and watch for the butterfly gardens along the way. God does not expect us to go charging up the staircase, because sure enough we will run out of steam quickly. Instead, we are better served to take our time and savor the journey, recognizing our need for rest along the way. If we try to rush things, not only will we miss the butterfly garden, but we will collapse long before we reach the lighthouse.