It’s been a day since the word ‘veer’ was posted at Pink Ink Workshop in the Outrageous Vocabulary forum… and I’ve been thinking hard on that word, chewing on it. I immediately loved it’s meaning, especially the turning toward the course of the sun. I thought what a lovely image that is, with obvious spiritual connotations, but I wasn’t suspecting anything beyond that.
This morning brought feelings of shame in my recognition of a deeper association with this word veer. As I walked and considered veering, and my desire to be on course, I saw myself as a small boat, one who was choosing to sail close to land rather than in the open sea. At first I thought nothing much wrong in this, and then the land forms, islands, began to take on labels of things that I was returning to and circling around and enjoying the waters of. And that’s where the shame crept in.
That’s when I knew my walk would be one of repentance and forgiveness, which interestingly is what repentance is about… a turning from, a veering away from and setting a course toward something else. In my case, the repentant veering was to be about the repetitive patterns of jealousy and envy in my heart that I steered my boat dangerously close to.
As I walked and thought through this ugly reality, I recognized other islands of shame… pride and conceit were also in my archipelago of dishonour. I named it all… out loud. At first I thought that asking for forgiveness was enough, and asking for change. But I realized that for me anyway, I needed to speak it out first… own my lies, own my dirt, and then ask for forgiveness and the supernatural power to veer my small boat of a life toward the course… of the Son.
The walk was good today. I met God there. I was real with him… no masks or excuses today. I saw the instances in my life both long ago and recently where I chose to sail in dangerous waters, close to reefs that could have capsized my boat. Sometimes there was an awareness of where I sailed, other times I just found myself there, with guilt and shame and trying to adjust my sails alone. Sometimes I even moored there for a while.
But today as I worked this all out with God, I realized that the course I want to set for myself is directly into the open sea. I believe the course of the Son is where I am to be. I believe he has so much more for me than were I to remain in the shallows of islands that offer some sort of sick attraction for a time. He has uncharted waters, exciting destinations, and navigational expertise that I can’t even imagine.
I know my boat has a tendency to get off course and that I will continue to veer to correct it. But, I desire to set my compass to true north - and follow that course.
Sheets unfurled, spyglass in hand,
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