Trust in the Slow Work of God
I get frustrated sometimes.
Things I think should be happening aren’t happening. Dreams are slow to unfold. Things I would like to happen now are taking a long time. Results I work hard to see aren’t yet visible.
I was stewing over these things while I was out running tonight. Running is particularly good for stewing, I think. All those negative, “not nice” emotions that I suppress so often get huffed and puffed to the surface. On good runs, they get huffed and puffed out of my system – at least for awhile.
On my cool-down walk back to the house, I remembered a prayer/poem that I discovered shortly before I left Landrum in 2009. I thought I remembered packing it away in a box with other written mementoes I couldn’t part with at the time. Once back home, I rifled through the box until I found it.
Yes, it still hold the same calming power for me in 2012 as it did in 2009. I’d like to share it with you. (Maybe you already know it well. If so, enjoy it again.) So for me, for one new good friend who is searching for answers and direction and another new good friend who is also having a frustrating/discouraging week, and for anyone else who needs these words:
Above all, trust in the slow work of God
We are quite naturally impatient in everything
to reach the end without delay
We should like to skip the intermediate stages.
We are impatient of being on the way to something
unknown, something new. And yet it is the law of all progress
that it is made by passing through
some stages of instability-
and that it may take a very long time. And so I think it is with you.
your ideas mature gradually – let them grow,
let them shape themselves, without undue haste. Don’t try to force them on,
as though you could be today what time
(that is to say, grace and circumstances
acting on your own good will)
will make of you tomorrow. Only God could say what this new spirit
gradually forming within you will be. Give Our Lord the benefit of believing
that his hand is leading you, and accept the anxiety of feeling yourself
in suspense and incomplete.
Trust in the slow work of God.
(by Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, 1881-1955)