It’s a long time since I last wrote or posted anything here, on what is meant to be a place where I intended to share something of my journey as I undergo formation for presbyteral ministry. It would be easy to say I’ve been too busy studying at college to have time to write, and while that would be true in part, it isn’t the whole story.
The truth is that I lost my voice. No, not literally, but spiritually, theologically, personally. Many times I’ve desired to post, but I have lacked inspiration and conviction to know what to write. I’ve struggled writing sermons too.
Among the cacophony of voices in the multitude of books, articles and writings from the centuries of Christian tradition, along with the wonderful voices of those I am learning and journeying alongside and being taught by, I’ve lost my voice, my confidence and conviction. I’ve been left feeling that so many other people say things so much more beautifully than I believe I ever can, what can I say? What use is there me adding my little, inexperienced voice to this cacophony, won’t I just muddy the waters?
But in the last few weeks I’ve begun to feel different; as if the tide has been changing. Having finished our second term I’ve been on what has felt like an essay marathon, but as I’ve approached the end I’ve come to realise I have a voice, a voice God has given me and I need to use it, and to make space to use it.
Holy Week this year has so far been very different to the past few years. I’ve not been selling Easter eggs and cards as I have since I left college, and nor have I been busy in church life, previously either preaching, organising or stewarding for various events This year I’m at Queens in the midst of the Easter holidays, at the tail end of my essay marathon without anything to specifically ‘do’ this Easter.
But that has been a wonderful thing, because not doing has meant I could ‘be’. While there are no lectures and few people on site at Queens, a part-time group have been here for ‘Easter School’ and I’ve taken the opportunity to join them for worship on a number of occasions, and I’ve benefitted from dipping into some of their services as holy week has progressed. Today I joined the Easter School’s ‘hour at the cross’, which consisted of a collection of readings, mediations music, prayer and silence which lead us through an hour of reflection. As I sat in the stillness I sensed the Lord speaking to me, reminding me that he called me, for who I am, made in his image, and that includes my voice.
So while I still struggle to know what to say and feel my voice isn’t as good as others, I know that that isn’t how God sees me, that I need to overcome my feelings of unworthiness and rediscover my God given voice, because he’s called me for being all that I am.
I hope sharing where I am in my journey at the moment will help and encourage others of you too. And hopefully…as I find my voice…I won’t be so quite on here any longer…