I was just sitting out back with my dog Cooper, listening to the crickets and birds… enjoying the breeze, watching the trees sway and play hide and seek with the setting sun. It was the most peaceful I have felt in a while. Grace. I asked for the gift of peace today at Mass and I received it.
Recently I have felt like I am under attack. I have this feeling of dread and anger and bitter disappointment plaguing me … not sure why. Maybe it’s because the NH Rachel’s Vineyard team has reassembled … maybe because a new year of Life Teen has started … and he, the deceiver, the liar, does not like it, he knows the good we can do in the world.
This morning as I read the Magnificat before Mass I was struck by Ephesians 4: 1-3. “I, then, a prisoner for the Lord, urge you to live in a manner worthy of the call you have received, with all humility and gentleness, with patience, bearing with one another through love, striving to preserve the unity of the spirit through the bond of peace.” That stopped me in my tracks. I needed that. I needed to stop. He had been whispering lies in my ear and I needed to remember my purpose; to preach the gospel with my life. To be love and peace… but I was not feeling that at all… this darkness surrounded me, poked me, whispered in my ear… made my head spin and made me seethe … He wanted me to lose my temper. He wanted me to lash out and quit. He wanted to ruin me.
My friend reminded me that
And she reminded me: when God wants you to grow He makes you uncomfortable … ugh. Maybe God wants me to do new things … Maybe. Not sure. Usually if I make plans God laughs. I have no idea where God is taking me or what He wants me to do this year … but I realized today maybe God wants me to rely on Him more, spend more time with Him. To be silent and to grow in my spiritual life, because I have been too loud in my head and he cannot speak to me when the crazy noise of the world takes up residence in my skull.
Mass… ah, the peace of the Mass soothed me this morning. Psalm 54. The Lord upholds my life. … behold God is my helper; the Lord sustains my life. And then James … cultivate peace. … and the Gospel according to Mark… the first shall be last, be a servant… be like a child… and then I was slayed by a song. Our band played, “Lord, I need you.” And I lost it. I wept. How beautiful.
I needed a visual: All I could do… I climbed into God’s lap like a child, curled up, snuggled up next to Him. He hugged me to Him and wrapped His wings around me; sheltering me. Lord, I surrender. I am not strong enough. I am too angry, to bitter, too weak. I give it all to you. Help me. Give me the grace to move forward as I should. Give me Your peace. I cannot do it without you. Your grace is enough. If you want me to move on or want me to try something new I am ready. But please give me your grace…. Your peace.