Tuesday, September 27, 2005

signs begin to speak

It's been a while since I've posted up here... Things have been busy with the start of the new semester, but that isn't really the reason I haven't posted. I guess I've just been too self-absorbed to say anything. That's probably saying a lot, since I was probably somewhat self-absorbed to even start a blog where I talk about myself all the time, but... lately I haven't even wanted to look at my life in detail to see how much pride was there. I started to work through some of this over the past couple of weeks, but it took the retreat that I went on this weekend to really get to a point where I could start to feel at peace again.

The theme throughout this retreat centered on detatchment and following the signs God places in our lives. Fr. Dave, quoting someone (I forgot who), said, "When minds are enlightened, hearts are enkindled, & the signs begin to speak." The opposite is also true. When I let my mind go to waste, focusing on my own desires, then my heart grows cold, and all the signs look like gibberish to me. I lose my way. The difficulty is, I have to make the first step. No matter how lost I am, there is always some sign pointing the way to Christ, like God showing the wise men the way to Christ through their astrology. If my mind is to be enlightened in the ways of the Lord, I must follow that first sign. But I often am reluctant to. This was the nature of the first sin, and all the sins after - this belief that God is not giving me what I deserve; He cannot make me happy, so I must make myself happy. And so I fail to follow the signs, believing my way is better. But God does not seek to give us what we deserve - He seeks to pour out gifts we do not deserve. Everything that God has given me is a gift.

As with everything else, my thoughts turn back to my state of singlehood - this condition that has occupied so many of my thoughts over the past year. My singlehood is a gift. Like everything else God has given to me, He has made me single for a reason. The joys of being single, of being independent and able to devote myself to my work and my activities, these are the joys He has for me. The trials of being single also He has placed in my life for my growth. How can I stubbornly claim that I deserve to be in a relationship when God has freely given me the undeserved gift of singlehood?

Right now, I do not understand. Like at the wedding at Cana, I want wine more than anything, and God is telling me to go find water. I have seen the sign, "Do whatever He tells you," so I accept this gift of water, trusting that what I end up with will exceed all of my expectations or desires. Then if my Lord desires to give me the gift of a relationship, it will be His to give, not mine to claim, as I know how unprepared I was, how unable to love, until He began to use this water to transform my heart, so that no matter what my eventual vocation, I will be able to say to Him, "But you have kept the good wine until now."

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