Space to Learn What I Already Thought I Knew

Right now, I’m in this funky place where some of what I was comfy and cozy with has been pulled out from under me before I knew what was happening. It’s a rocky place where there’s a multitude of questioning and desire for quiet–lots of time to think. My heart and mind beg for space as if I’m crammed into a box and can’t stretch and run and jump. When I have carved out time to do what I think I need (practically every day), my mind feels unsettled and races on to the next big thing without stopping to rest. This is foreign, and I’m not sure what to do with it.

I have to wonder if this all has to do with trust, here in this uncomfortable place. Trusting God the way I want to seems easy(er) when I’m okay with all that swirls around me. In this space, I’m having to learn how all over again.

I just so happened to run across this poem weeks ago when I thought I should tuck it away for another time. So glad I did. It’s exactly what I need right now, at this very moment. And you?

Patient Trust

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.

—Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, SJ

3 thoughts on “Space to Learn What I Already Thought I Knew”

  1. “Above all, trust in the slow work of God.” This is so hard to do at times. We like things handled right away with no delay. It takes discipline to work through an issue over time and to stick with it till it is resolved. It is also hard waiting on God at times. We want his answer now. We do not like to wait. I think we have to realize that to wait is on some level work and on some level trust.

    I think we need to move away from the thought that we are not doing anything when we are waiting. Sometimes it is harder to wait than to take some kind of action.


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