Tuesday, February 13, 2007
O You of Little Faith!
This evening I had to be at my parish for a meeting, and as I always do, especially in times of adversity, I went into the Adoration chapel to pray and greet my Lord. I didn't even want to go to the Church tonight; I have to finish my outline and work for my talk on sin for tomorrow's RCIA class, and I have an application I want to fill out etc. But I gave my word so I prepared to go.
But that didn't stop me from complaining about it as I let my dogs out before I left my house. I'm stressed, I'm worn out, and "Lord, how long must I wait?", and "Lord, make haste to help me" were psalm-prayers which came to the forefront of my mind. I've been feeling not entirely dry, but really as though God just isn't paying attention. Not that I really so much deserve His attention, big whiny baby that I am, but only that He throw me a bone from His table. I'm not asking for much.
The big hurdle to quitting is financial; I have too many financial obligations and no safety net. I have to keep a roof over my head, a car in the garage, and gas in the tank. Those are basic things, and they aren't cheap.
And I'm worried; no matter what I do, stay or go, there is a different problem to face. (Thus the previous post, thanks to Shakespeare's Hamlet for the inspiration).
So tonight as I grumbled my complaints, I arrived in the chapel and somehow found that quiet spot somewhere in my soul. My complaining was done; I just wanted to be with Jesus. I took out my Magnificat and began to read, beginning with Morning Prayer.
Each and every word spoke to me, and this section in particular:
So do not worry and say, "What are we to eat?" or "What are we to drink?" or "What are we to wear?" (Mt 6:31)
God did not create the world only to abandon it to its own devices. He cares day by day for all that he has made, though we do not always recognize his hand at work.
That cut right to the core. I knelt up straight and paid attention.
Bless the Lord, my soul!
Lord God, how great you are!....
I will sing to the Lord all my life,
make music to my God while I live.
May my thoughts be pleasing to him.
I find y joy in the Lord.
Bless the Lord, my soul.
What a great reminder; as I revealed a few days ago, I wake up every morning praising God, even when I don't want to. Like this morning, I offered a lackluster "Glory to God!" followed by an apology that I didn't feel like praising Him but knew that even in the depths of my misery and dread, it was necessary. Then I went throughout my day complaining, not praising. We cannot complain and praise at the same time; it's simply not possible. We can be miserable and praise, but we cannot be double-tongued.
Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing into barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are not you more important than they? Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your life-span? Why are you anxious about clothes? Learn from the way the wold flowers grow. They do not work or spin. But I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was clothed like one of them. if God so clothes the grass of the field, which grows today and is thrown into the oven tomorrow, will he not much more provide for you, O you of little faith?
I think I've been chastized.
Especially when we consider, that last phrase: O you of little faith
Where else do we see this? Where else does Jesus say this?
In the midst of the storm, Jesus slept peacefully in the boat, and the Apostles woke him up. "Can't you see we are dying!". Jesus calmed the storm, rebuked the waves, and chastized the Apostles, saying, "O you of little faith!"
I am in the midst of a storm, and while being buffeted by waves, it is I who rock the boat; Jesus is with me, biding his time. He has not left me; is only asking me to trust.
So tonight, although I'm still stressed, I am somewhat comforted by the divine consolation provided to me in Adoration, while I rested for a moment at the feet of Jesus. He is in charge of this situation; he will not allow the boat to overturn. He is aware of my job, my agony, my concerns, and my lack of faith.
I'm sorry, Jesus.
I love you, I praise you, and I trust you.