I don’t like Mondays.
I know, I know, I know…so unholy to admit that, especially because, well, Monday’s also a day that the Lord made, so I should rejoice and be glad in it. It’s another day that I’m alive. It’s a day to go to a marvelous job where I have the opportunity to help shepherd women to pursue their educational goals and add depth to their spirituality. And most of the time, it’s a running day. And I don’t like running.
Some runners have the grace and speed of a gazelle, or at least the slow and steady endurance of a tortoise. I rock the treadmill, sweat like a guilty man at sentencing, and pant relentlessly until the final seconds tick down to zero. Mascara running, perspiration marks glowing like gym halos, I slither off the torturous mill of tread, victorious, but barely so. Keenly aware of my weakness, odor, and sheer unattractiveness at the moment, I hit the showers, done.
Mondays completely scrub off the squeaky-clean veneer of Sunday services and all the charges to live better, act better, love better. Believe me; as soon as I pull out of my driveway, I’m losin’ my religion faster than an REM song. Mondays remind me, I’m not doing this in my own strength, because I have none.
Enter Wednesday. The Hump Day. The middle of the week. Almost the weekend (I’m squealing as I write that…)! Oh, and the day named after a Germanic god whose talents were quickness and, wait for it, eloquence.
My blog’s on Wednesdays for a reason: I find hope in Wednesday. It’s a balancing day: we look forward to the relief, rest, and recharging of the weekend. We look back at what has been accomplished already–and what hasn’t, and think about how to end the week with effectiveness, energy, and some form of grace.
We’re living in the Wednesday of the story of God’s marathon work with His people: the time in between the spiritual starting-points of creation and atonement, and the finish-line of re-creation and reunion with our Lord. What do we do in the Wednesday of the gospel story? We have the privilege of looking back on our Christian heritage–the witness of God’s people in the Bible and the stories and traditions of martyrs and apostles and the myriads of the faithful.
And we get to run! Not on our own strength, mind you. I love to think of mounting up on eagles’ wings (especially when I’m winded), and God has provided us His Holy Spirit, to rejuvenate and inspire us when we’re out of breath. He’s in the business of transforming limp dust and dry bones into life.
My prayer is this (even on Mondays): pant hard and ugly, jog with squealing anticipation for the finish line, struggle to keep Jesus as the prize the entire rest of the way, and be grateful for the cloud of witnesses past and present that cheer us on in the Wednesday of the gospel story.