Some difficult decisions today. To ensure a less frazzled and less stressed Christmas for us, I had to fight myself a little to do what was right. I had to disappoint my kids. I thought I’d be filled with peace and calm after I made those tough calls, because I assumed that was the natural result of doing right. Instead, my frustrations over Christmas plans boiled over, compounded by family issues and of course, the looming shadow of my return to work.
My heart felt like it was being scratched by thorns from all sides, the weariness within me deepening. Why was life always so difficult? More to the point, why am I the way I am – wounded so easily, such an easy target for despondency? Why does it take so little to splinter me?
Why is peace so fleeting and so elusive for me? When will this battle for inner peace ever end?
When you cannot live up to the ideal you have set for yourself, live up to the one thing I ask before all else: trust in My merciful love. In this way you will always be pleasing to Me: in your moments of weakness as much as in your times of regularity… Accept your weakness of body and those of your spirit as well; they are no obstacle to the work of My grace in your soul. The only obstacle to My work in souls is the lack of trust in My merciful love. ~ In Sinu Jesu, page 98
I wanted to trust, especially in this crucial moment when our few remaining weeks to Christmas were stretched out barren and dull, as far as the eye could see, as one plan after another crumbled. I wanted to trust when trust was hardest.
Today is the Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe. For me, this title accorded to the Mother of God means battle. But when so many the world over are fighting far greater battles, here I was, struggling with a mere skirmish, that was nonetheless draining my spirit.
Fight for me, Mother of Guadalupe, I pray, as I fight for Thee.
Some hours later, home from an errand, I went to spend some time in the garden. The sky above was beautiful, wearing a robe of joyous blue despite the late hour, with windbroom clouds in elegant fan clusters from east to west. My eyes feasted on the waning beauty of the aging day; yet, I longed for more. I longed for my heart to be pierced by the vista above me, the work of my Creator.
Remembering Jesus’ words to me, Look at Me, dearest, something led me to a chair. From there, gazing at the brilliant gold of the sunset sky, alongside the soft blue of the day that was, I told myself, God is in the sky before me. As I seal my eyes to it, I am looking at my God.
Slowly, the brilliant sky began to blush into a soft rose, yet languid streams of clouds proudly bore still the spill of gold upon their backs.
As the clouds stretched out their arms as if one last time, a tiny white~blue light began to shine out steadily from before them. In a way I have never seen her before, the Evening Star gazed down at me solemnly from her throne in a sky humming its last notes of farewell. She was not pinned in the depths of the sky as usual, but strangely, resting on a silver~white disc, she shone from in front of the clouds.
Wondering at what I was seeing, I held her gaze for the longest time. I’m looking at You, Lord, I whispered. I’m trying to trust.
Inside my house later, I realised something had changed within me. Gone were the nettles of discouragement, regret and frustration. In its place, a strange liquid quiet had slipped in.
It was the quiet of the Evening Star.