Friday, September 24, 2010

I peek around the curtain once again

I won't apologize for my long absence (that would be arrogant and pretentious), nor will I resolve to begin again posting regularly (because my capability of breaking resolutions is well-documented), but I am breaking the ice, dipping my toe in the water, and performing other relevant idioms as I once again apply keyboard to blank screen at Exultet.

I've run across lots of wonderful and memorable things in past months, but for right now I will just start by revisiting some things I've said here before that might be worth reminding myself of.

N.B. The trouble with being an extrovert, you see, is that we develop our thoughts as we are expressing them, and when we're done, we can't completely remember what we said. So, to me, these thoughts are fresh as the morning dew. Pathetic, huh? I hope you enjoy them

Are you caught up in the "oughts"? What like you've got is a feast of blessing that will never grow dry or stale and from which you can help yourself any time you want. You're rich, woman! So, yes. You can read and study, or be still before God's face, or see God in the face of your neighbor, or have long phone calls full of holy hilarity, or whatever.

See, you've hit on one of the things I can get staunch about (until God tells me not to). His job is to steer. Our job is to follow. The choreography of our spiritual development is not our responsibility, but we listen and respond as He trains us how to listen and respond.

Am I lazy or trusting? Who knows? But I trust that God's fully able to change my focus if He wants me to do something else.
A comment on a post by fellow blogger Therese in 2004
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Time magazine's recent (excellent) piece on Mother Teresa's dryness and "dark night" experiences during most of her spiritual walk has made quite a stir. And I have indeed been stirred by the realization that her faithfulness, love and service stemmed completely from grace, not even assisted by those moments of joy and spiritual consolation that most of us think we need in order to keep our spiritual lives on track.

The uber-predictable Christopher Hitchens, who has made a lucrative profession as an Atheist, has a slightly different perspective.
So, which is the more striking: that the faithful should bravely confront the fact that one of their heroines all but lost her own faith, or that the Church should have gone on deploying, as an icon of favorable publicity, a confused old lady who it knew had for all practical purposes ceased to believe?
Well, when all you have is a hammer, everything looks like a nail. Mr. Hitchens seems to believe that everyone is on the lookout for the Main Chance and is ready to leverage all for personal advantage. Ergo, I believe, his rather energetic and hysterical responses over the years to Mother Teresa as the epitome of all things Christian. More fool, he.
From a post entitled "What is Teresa teaching us?" in 2007
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Thursday morning, Henry and I were at the closing for our new house. Our realtor stepped out to take a cell call and returned to tell us that an offer would be coming over that day on my house [that I had long been trying to sell]. We reviewed it and accepted it that afternoon. So, amazingly enough, in all the 2,912 two-hour periods since I listed the house, God chose that one to bring me an acceptable offer to purchase my own. I love it when God reminds me that he's in charge.
From 2006. I had completely forgotten that "coincidence".
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I tried and failed to excerpt this simply because I'm madly in love with the whole post. Here's "what to look for in a husband."
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And finally, some assorted quotations I've pulled in over the years:

"In point of fact, God is less concerned to make us perfect than to attach us firmly to him."
Jacques Philippe

"Once we accept him, we find we were truly deceived. It was only the skin of the heavenly fruit that seemed bitter. The meat ravishes the soul."
Bishop Sheen

"The act of defending any of the cardinal virtues has today all the exhilaration of a vice."
G.K. Chesterton

[Regarding 9/11] "We all became more considerate, more respectful, more mature, almost instantly. Drivers drove their cars correctly. People held doors for one another. There was the tacit understanding that we were all "in this together." We put ourselves aside. We were as one. We could have moved a mountain. You could see it. You could feel it. It was real.

It only lasted two weeks. After that, we reverted. But to have seen it at all, even once in a lifetime, is a memory worth keeping."
Ed Gurney, on Facebook
It's nice to see you again.


Kansas Bob said...

Love that Bishop Sheen quote! Good to virtually see you here again.



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