For those of you who were in worship this last Saturday night, you probably heard me share a bit about my recent vacation to Georgia. My awesome husband and I journeyed to Atlanta to spend time with my sister and brother-in-law. We spent the week hiking in the mountains, watching movies and eating fantastic food. They are in seminary and my husband and I are both pastors, so we were all so thankful for a spring break. The trip was so refreshing! As we were on our way back to Kansas, though, my husband Andy and I both started weeping. Car rides provide a lot of great time to talk and in our conversations we unpacked a seasons worth of reflections – our dreams, heartaches, joys, fears, doubts and concerns for others. I thought it was so strange that our reflection happened at the end of the trip until I stepped back and thought a bit more about it. I think it took both Andy and I being willing to step back from the busynes s of our lives to actually look at and deal with our feelings. This is so important because when we are able to reflect on our feelings, I think it becomes easier for us to see where God has been/is/will be at work in our lives.

So this is my challenge to you this week and I think it works perfectly in the season of Lent—a time of reflection. Do your best to step back from the busyness of life – for 10 minutes, for an hour, for the afternoon, for a week and be honest with yourself and God about your raw emotions. Invite God into the places that even you are afraid to go.

For some of us this is really hard (myself included), so I have included a Mandala. Mandalas are basically glorified coloring sheets with patterns that are repetitive. They contribute to our spiritual discipline insofar as they allow our minds to detach and also concentrate simultaneously – this is often the place where I can be more in touch with what is going on within me and what God is communicating to me. After you have been coloring for a while, my hope is that you can go to God in prayer with a greater sense of awareness of the God of love. [Download the Mandala here]

Peace to you,

– Rev. Katherine Ebling-Frazier, Pastor