...in learning to trust
Too late to learn to trust?
Is my life a life punctuated by misfortune or a life punctuated by blessings? In truth it is a mixture.
Slowly, in my older years I have come to appreciate time and again that consolation has come out of desolation. I recognise God seems to have placed a thought, a physical thing, a person, an event, right in the path of a misfortune – just like a road block, a barrier to prevent the slide into desolation.
Once when working in hot bushland in rural Africa and feeling vulnerably alone and afraid, I unexpectedly came across a tin-roofed building with a crude cross on its roof. I entered to find roughly hewn wooden benches on an earth floor and a rickety table altar. Kneeling, I instantly felt wrapped in silent, safe peace.
At another time in my life, a gentle and professional palliative care nurse kept watch with me as I held the hand of my husband as his life ebbed away. Later I learned that she had worked a double shift in a busy, modern hospital to stay beside me – she was a Catholic nun.
Rather less dramatically yet as importantly, I learned a valuable lesson about one of my own weaknesses. In my work I was obliged to be among disabled children. I had always been conscious of feeling embarrassed in the company of those with a disability, young or old, but growing to love and care for these special children I lost that awkwardness and revel in my new found insight.
Put your trust in the Lord. Be not afraid. He is with you always. These are words I have heard so often through my life but it seems to have taken me too long to learn and to understand and to trust. Now they are words which are my consolation at every turn of every day.