Some background. There seems to be some confusion about what I’ve been writing over the years especially recently. Maybe I can clarify what I’ve been doing and why/how I’ve been doing it. In a few words, what I write is about me, and me alone. My ego is speaking.
I am not trying to convert anybody, sway others in their beliefs, or anything like that. I write these gospel musings based on what I think the Gospel Stories are saying to me at this point on my journey. They are not an attempt to get others to believe anything, only an expression of what I believe, and, at times, why I think I believe it. In other words, what I write is only about me. If folks get some benefit from anything, that is a plus, but not one that I would intend. It might mean they are open to the Spirit in their lives at a particular time and place. The Sprit breathes where the Spirit breathes. I have no control over that, nor do I want any.
I firmly believe the Spirit happens in our life as our life is happening. There is a lot going on in my life these days, much of it unexpected. I know I am just like everyone else in this. I think I know my own journey a little, but I do not pretend to know anybody else’s journey.
I don’t preach what I write. I might preach a point or two, but certainly not the whole thing.. People are entitled to the Word of God in homilies, not just to my opinions. They are not homilies, only essays. They are much too complicated for a homily. I try to keep my homilies short and simple, which these essays are not.
I’m learning a lot from the folks I’ve been meeting, especially lately. I just write what I think the Gospel Story is saying to me at this point in my life. I’m kind of surprised at all that is coming out in prayer. Sometimes it’s fairly strong and intense, other times not so much. I try to listen, without attempting to impose anything on anybody, to be open to everything in my life as it happens, and to everybody I meet as I meet them. It isn’t always easy. But, at times, it really is enjoyable. With all that is happening in my life, I am meeting wonderfully phenomenal folks that I wouldn’t meet if this stuff weren’t happening, and for this I am very grateful, even, or especially, for the unpleasant things, which really are, and have been, occasions of grace for me.
Getting used to a “new normal” isn’t easy, and honestly, it’s a bit of a shock. Again, I’m with wonderful folks, and so find myself eagerly looking forward to each day as it comes. The Gospels are also taking on a new meaning, and at times a much deeper and unexpected richness. I have no doubt that grace is real. I feel I’m definitely learning. When I go to my cardiac rehab I’m watching the Gospel happen, even though there is no religious connection or terminology of any kind. It’s just caring people helping each other in any number of ways, at times in ways that are taxing and difficult for them, yet they just keep on doing it — the Gospel in action. People really caring. This is for me a wonderful experience.
What I write is just me sharing this stage of my journey with any one who cares to be a part of it. I have no expectations of anything. I have no interest whether people agree or disagree, however I will not tolerate nastiness.
I would have to say that with all that has been going on in the past year since my last retreat God has never felt so real or so close. I am amazed at all this, and very grateful. My goal, perhaps daily operational principle, is to help Jesus live our love, and to do it with an Alleluia, as my sister did in her suffering for the past few years.
I have this year’s annual retreat scheduled in a few weeks. After last years’ retreat, I wonder what this one will be like. I know grace is real. Just sayin . . .