Series 22 Letting Go Lesson 7 Letting Go of Shame

Purpose – To contemplate letting go of shame, pride, perfectionism…..

Prepare:  As you walk to your chosen spot, breath in deeply with 4 steps; hold your breath for 2 steps, breathe out for 4 steps. Continue this walking preparation for several minutes.  Continue to breathe in a deliberate rhythm:  breathe in the peacefulness of the night; hold; breathe out any tension in your body.  Then allow the body to take over its automatic job of breathing. Can you let go and allow the body to do its job? What do you notice?

Read John 21:1-23 using the Ignatian Method of engaging the Biblical story from different perspectives.

Read as if observing the scene from a distance.  Envision the atmosphere by the Sea of Tiberias during these days alter the resurrection.  John records that Jesus had already showing himself to the disciples twice.  Note any questions or observations in your journal.

Read the passage from the viewpoint of Peter.  Perceive his emotions as the story progresses.  What might Peter be thinking that is not recorded by John? Imagine yourself standing in the boat when Jesus appears on the shore; when the net is filled with fish. Envision yourself eating around the fire with friends and Jesus; then after breakfast listening to Jesus ask you the questions.  How do you feel with each question you are asked?  How do you answer?   Return to the portion that most impacts you and act out this section in Peter’s role.  Journal what is significant for you.

Reread the passage from the perspective of Jesus.  Imagine his emotions. Consider how he sees Peter…what might he be thinking that is not said? Journal what impacts you. 

Apply:  If Jesus appeared before you now, given your current shame/actions/concerns/process of letting go, how would you feel?  What might he say?  How would you respond? Journal what you want to continue to ponder.

Pray:  Sit quietly with your fists clenched or your palms open, as you may need to be authentic; listening, letting go in conversation with Jesus. Close with the words below, or use your own.

Gentle and loving Spirit,  I love Jesus and want to serve in the Kingdom of God.  But I too easily mess up; hurt others.  Work in and through me so that I become who you intend me to be.  Stretch inside me a space for questions.  Teach me to listen; to be compassionate with others.  Give me your grace to hold myself and my imperfections with love, as you did with Peter.