Greetings as we begin this New Year with confidence that it will be less restrictive than 2020. By now I had hoped that we could have planned a meeting here in the Convent to pray, to reflect, to share, to chat and to drink tea. Ongoing messages from the Government make it necessary for me to revert to the written word as a means of keeping in touch.
I have thought at length on an appropriate reflection and in view of the circumstances I get the impression that there is much fear around. The media present us with daily statistics suggesting that this virus is out of control. Looking at scripture and the lives of the saints I was drawn to think about St Paul’s letter to the
Phillippians Ch 4...
“I WANT YOU TO BE HAPPY, ALWAYS HAPPY IN THE LORD. THERE IS NO NEED TO WORRY; BUT IF THERE IS ANYTHING YOU NEED PRAY FOR IT
ASKING GOD FOR IT WITH PRAYER AND THANKSGIVING”
Following on from that we have the prayer of St. Teresa of Avila...
LET NOTHING DISTURB YOU
LET NOTHING FRIGHTEN YOU
ALL THINGS ARE PASSING AWAY
GOD NEVER CHANGES
PATIENCE OBTAINS ALL THINGS
WHOEVER HAS GOD LACKS NOTHING
GOD ALONE SUFFICES
We have the example in the life of Jesus who was completely at one with the Father that trials and tribulations are part of the human condition. Jesus experienced pain and suffering in His own life. The word “FEAR” is found over 365 times in the Bible and many times we have been encouraged by the word of God with the phrase “DO NOT BE AFRAID”.
Our journey in life does not begin with us, it begins in God who initiates it. God is so real in our lives and in the world around us. We do not go to God, we are drawn to Him just as two people who love each other are drawn together. The presence of God is all around and there is no accident in that. God is as real in our lives as are the people who walk down the road ahead of us.
Everything changes except the PRESENT MOMENT and that is all we have, as we cannot live in the past and we do not know the future.
St Teresa’s Prayer has much with which to comfort us in these uncertain times when we are bombarded with so much negativity when we turn on out TV sets. There is nothing wrong with being anxious, but the only answer is to let it go and not cling to it . Everything in life is made of parts and all things inside parts fall apart.
Life can be full of “ifs” and illusions and we can spend time running away. All things pass away except the Providence of God. Faith is a dynamic response to what life throws at us. We are being challenged at this time to pray and to take to heart the words of Scripture “ THERE IS NO NEED TO WORRY”.
And to help us to place each day in under the Providence of God we might like to repeat the Prayer of St Teresa.
LET NOTHING DISTURB YOU...
At the end of this reflection I will share a few verses from Leonard Cohen’s Song...
THE BIRDS THEY SANG AT THE BREAK OF DAY
START AGAIN I HEARD THEM SAY
DON’T DWELL ON WHAT HAS PASSED AWAY;
OR WHAT IS YET TO BE
RING THE BELLS THAT STILL CAN RING
FORGET YOUR PERFECT OFFERING
THERE IS A CRACK , A CRACK IN EVERYTHING
THAT’S HOW THE LIGHT GETS IN
THAT’S HOW THE LIGHT GETS IN.
For us as Christians THE LIGHT IS GOD.
Sr Assumpta Walsh