Friday, 27 June 2008

Love & Sacrifice

You know lately, I've been wondering 'where is God?'. I've been doing my spiritual reading and so on and trying to talk in prayer, but I've not been able to really connect... It's like I phone and the number is always busy.

Today, my sisters partner collapsed and was rushed into hospital. Being with a bit of a gammy ankle just now, it's a bit difficult to get around and very difficult to drive - yet I managed to get myself into the car, drive to my sisters and then from there to the Hospital in Bury St. Edmunds.

After a good long wait, we finally saw somebody and discovered that they wanted to keep him in overnight... Being the bearer of bad news is never easy, and especially when you have to tell your sister 'it's a bit more serious than we first thought'. So I called the house, and asked my sister to make up a bag of basics so her partner wouldn't need to stay in with just his clothes he had on. The idea was I would drive back from Bury and then drive out again with the bag. When I arrived I found her packing the bag, putting some pictures in of the kids and holding back the tears.

When we arrived back at the Hospital, Laura just took the driving seat and made sure everything was OK, and most of all that her 'boy' as she calls him was OK, that he was comfortable and was aware of how much she treasured him. She was 'expressing her love' whilst putting her own comforts and needs as a second which for many people is the hardest sacrifice we can ever choose to make. That in itself is a mirror image of the Love of God, who 'sent His only Son, so that we might have life'

It's when you see the relief and the small things that people do to comfort one another that you realise where God really is. He is in those small things, the things that make 'life' bearable, the things that bring us a sigh of relief and the things that make us value what we have...

That might sound a bit like a silly ignatian 'God is in the flowerpot' story, but nevertheless it's our ability to see God in what is True, Good and Beautiful that proves to us He exists and which serves as a subtle reminder that God is with those who we might think is without Him; it's maybe up to us to help reveal the full picture.


Geri said...

I'm having real trouble feeling connected to God at the moment. Things are going a bit pear-shaped in my life, and I find myself asking God why He's letting them fall apart like they are. I don't mean to. I really want to restore the good relationship I had with God, but despair is beginning to overtake hope. I wish I could see Him in the small things too. Say a prayer for me pls, I'll pray for your intentions also.

John Paul said...

Geri, my heart goes out to you.

I always take comfort in Corinthians 9:8:

'Besides, God is able to make every blessing of yours overflow for you, so that in every situation you will always have all you need for any good work.'

In the spiritual life God (at the beggining) holds us close and then after a while, when we're ready He puts us down and let's us do some of the running.

A lot of it's about telling yourself (over and over) that you'll be fine. But more than that it's remaining faithful to Him. That's what's hardest when you seem to have no consolation. But remember how God never forgets a prayer, he uses it even if it's not what we've asked for. And when we suffer, we use that knowing it's 'Ad Majorem, Dei Gloriam' - For the greater glory of God and for those who have nobody else to pray.

God bless,


Geri said...

Thank you JP, much much appreciated.

It actually really helps to have a spiritual perspective on a problem doesn't it? Instead of just advising someone about their problems from an earthly practical point of view (which obviously helps too), things seem to make more sense when you realise that your problem is part of a much bigger picture. One we mightn't understand yet, but reading words from the Bible or words of the saints kind of gives the problem meaning - I'm thinking of what you said about our suffering being for the greater glory of God.

Instead of muddling through problems and losing your way, it kind of allows you to rise above the mess, and be able to look down at it with a clearer head. Does that make any sense to you?

Your words have really comforted me, and I think my real problem has maybe been that I'm looking for the answer in worldly things rather than spiritual things, and only occasionally looking up to God to accuse Him of not helping me. He must be so sick of me!

I only discovered your blog yesterday, I'm a practising Catholic but have never thought to use the net to further my faith. Well done JP, your blog has touched my heart.