Wednesday, May 12, 2010

"I have so much more to tell you..."

“...but you cannot bear it now.”

I love this sentence. As the days dwindle down to his return to the Father, the Lord Jesus tells his friends that there is "so much more" to share with them. Now, in his glorified body, the Lord Jesus can see beyond our flesh and bone. He can hear the songs of the angels and taste the sweetness of being wholly in God’s presence. Now, beyond death, he knows everything and longs to help us understand the Mystery. But, the Lord knows too well, that we “cannot bear it now.” Though there is so much we long to see and understand, from our human vantage point the veil can only be lifted so much. We are still flesh and bone – still straining to hear the morning birdsong and looking for God in the mess of being human. So, to satisfy his desire to give us “so much more,” he will send us his Spirit. The Spirit will reveal what is true and good and holy. The Spirit will give us strength to abide in these bodies – to mark the days in time and space – until the Lord comes to bring us home.

But something is fascinating me. What is it, do you suppose, that we “cannot bear” now? I suspect it has something to do with the unconditional love of God – the limitless compassion and mercy in which we dwell every minute of every day. I think the Spirit is working within us and among us to make this love known to us. Now, here, we cannot bear the weight of this love. We cannot believe it to be real. We find it hard to accept that no sin, no loss, no suffering in our journey will keep this love at bay. Nothing will keep this love from taking over our world – one soul at a time. The Spirit is preparing us for the day when days will end - working to draw every human heart into the light of God's love before Christ comes again in glory. Then, the eternal Word will speak to us one more time and all shall be revealed. Until then, only the Spirit can prepare us for this great movement into Mystery. Only the Spirit can teach us to trust that this Mystery will never let us go.

Blessings and love to you all...

- Sister Vicki
"Jesus Christ," by Pablo Renauld, 2007

Monday, May 10, 2010

Don't forget your change...

Most of us don’t like change so we respond to it in a myriad of creative ways. There’s the “If I don’t acknowledge it, it won’t really happen,” school of thought. Then, there are those among us who face it head-on and react from our feelings – sadness, fear, anger. Some of us, a small brave, cohort, embrace change. It is, after all, a mark of being alive. All that is by God’s good hand is in the process of living and dying. Nothing – no one – is the same one moment to the next. You’d think we’d get on board and celebrate change as a sign of God’s activity – accept change as if it were a gift wrapped in pretty tissue and ribbons. I think this proactive approach to change comes slowly in our journey toward God. I think we get better at it as life gives us practice – as circumstances beyond our control turn everything upside-down and then we survive. We learn – through many changes – that change itself is inseparable from growth. Over a lifetime of bending to the realities of life, we learn that it is God’s grace that keeps us from breaking. We learn that change – even the painful kind – makes us stronger, more resilient, more open to God’s Spirit at work in our lives.

This morning I told our girls at SGHS that I am being reassigned to the monastery effective July 1st. It is time for me to go home. The joy of going home is mixed with a sadness that comes from loving our students, faculty and staff. Being “on mission” here at our high school for the past three years has been such a gift. There are things I’ve learned about being a Benedictine Sister of Virginia that I could not have learned any other way. SGHS has a place in my heart now, as do the people of Richmond. That love is a done deal. Though I will return once a month for “Monastic Monday,” it won’t be the same. The girls know it, too. But they are accepting this change well and coming to trust that every sister who serves at SGHS will remain part of the community heart. When love is real, it never ends. It is that love – that grace – that will help us all to embrace this change and trust that the Spirit is hard at work.
Blessings and love to you all…

- Sister Vicki