When I was young, and even more foolish than I am now, I thought that the older people got, the narrower their minds became. And while I certainly know people in the later stages of their life who find comfort in having things stay the same and who prefer to not be challenged to change anything, I have found that for myself, being unwilling to change or have my comfort challenged is a trap.
As I have prayed for insight into God’s wisdom, I have discovered that my way of living and thinking has usually not been affirmed, but challenged. God persistently refuses to allow me to define God’s will in my own way, but constantly challenges me to recognize the many ways I choose what will make me most comfortable rather than what will serve the will of God. So, I am learning, in my older years, that I need to be open to constant challenges and changes if I truly want to be a follower of Jesus.
I titled this blog “Dust of the Rabbi” because I had heard a legend that the phrase was used as an image of the students of rabbis, who always walked behind their masters as they journeyed and learned and thus became covered in the fine dust that was raised on the dirt roads they travelled.
In searching for confirmation of this legend, I discovered the blog of Lois Tverberg “Our Rabbi Jesus”. In one of her posts she speaks of this legend (http://ourrabbijesus.com/2012/01/27/covered-in-the-dust-of-your-rabbi-an-urban-legend/), and shares the root source in the Misnah, Avot 1:4. “Let your house be a meeting-house for the wise; and powder yourself in the dust of their feet; and drink their words with thirstiness.”
Perhaps I am stretching the legend, but the image is a meaningful one for me as I journey. I wish to follow in the footsteps of Jesus, to learn from his teaching and his life; to be “covered in his dust” as it were, a reminder of humility and my place as a follower.
I am a second-career (or third, counting my stint as a Navy corpsman as career #1 and nursing as career #2), ordained Lutheran pastor, mother of 3 grown children. I am blessed with a wonderful husband who is sharing the journey, the challenges, and the changes (God’s divine gift of blessing and grace after 10 years alone following the disintegration of a 20 year marriage!)
For those of you who find their way to my pages, I look forward to having companions on the journey. I hope you find value in what is shared and that you will share your reflections, wisdom and stories.
Having become more and more dismayed at what much of the world envisions when they hear the word “Christian”, I have come to prefer calling myself a