1) the “friend” turns out not to be such a great friend, 2) the doctor has bad news, 3) the sarcastic teenager needs some well-thought out discipline/natural consequences/pipe bomb that will help her wake up and smell the coffee, 4) the boss is acting a little freaky lately and cannot tell why, 5) the finances are not behaving as they should be, or 6) whatever other perplexing problem arises for you and leaves you frustrated, confused, lonely, beaten up…
This quote is on 2 sticky notes posted for me that I move around my house depending on my comfort level with my “desert of clarity”.
“The way of trust (in God’s plan for me) is a movement into obscurity, into the undefined, and into ambiguity; not into some pre-determined, clearly delineated plan for the future. The next step discloses itself only out of a discernment of God acting in the desert of the present moment”.
From Brennan Manning’s book “Ruthless Faith”
I like the idea of not HAVING to figure it all out. A friend in Alanon often sternly tells me, “Anne, figuring it out is not a slogan!”. When the present moment feels completely deserted, and I am in the outback of a sand-swept existence with barely a cactus to distract me from my problem, I can let myself jump/fall/let go into the ambiguity of having no clue what to do next, ask God to help me, and trust that I am wrapped in a divine quilt of love and care RIGHT NOW. The next move will reveal itself with perfect timing and perfect wording, so I only have to relax and let it arrive. Nothing else. The correct action will surface after I remove my gunk-infected brain from the matter and just stay light, loose, and trusting.
May God shower his blessings upon you today and every day.
P.S. I need to add a post script to this blog entry. On the very day I wrote this, my single mom friend and dear blog reader Susan had a (non?)coincidental mishap. After a day of hurrying around everywhere, trying to get herself and her kids to where they were supposed to be, and wondering if she was going to be able to do what she needed to do that evening, she drove off quickly in her car. As she drove, she noticed a huge amount of white papers flying everywhere in the air, and pulled over just in time to realize it was her daytimer! Her daytimer had flown off the car and into the windy Colorado air, spreading her life’s organization on the road, under car tires, in the ditch… everything everywhere.
She had no idea what to do but to grab everything in a sheer adrenaline-spike lasting several minutes, frantically grabbing (and cussing I am sure) at her pages in the midst of a windstorm of pages swirling around and away from her. When she got back to her warm seat with wads of pages of her daytimer in her hand looking like old kleenexes, all she could say was “Slow your ass down, Susan! Slow down!”.
Ah yes, that was me. Papers flying all up in the air all around me. Yes it was a sign to slow down and enjoy life. Today I am loving life and I am so proud to have Anne as my loving butterfly, Erin B friend. Love ya!
Receiving and relaxing go together. So gentle. Thank you, Anne.