Sunday, July 31, 2011
“Don’t expect faith to clear things up for you. It is trust—not certainty.”
I’ve worked very hard these three weeks in New Mexico, maybe too hard, work being one of the many places where I have a hard time distinguishing the thin line between passion and pathology. Have accomplished much and in a way have had the whole time to myself and in another have had very little time to myself and it is all prayer, all joy, and in some sense all pain. I’m not lonely the way I used to be almost all the time, though I often feel a great weight of sorrow. Sorrow that we all have to leave this earth someday, sorrow at all the ones who have already left, sorrow at the suffering and untruth and greed and evil of the world.
I mean we have a government that can’t or won't balance its budget out of nothing but greed. Stop spending money on the military. Start making your "political platform" that in a nation that claims to be based on Christ the wealthy will NATURALLY want to share. But no, and so now they are saying maybe old people won't get their Social Security checks this month. In the richest, most "powerful" country on earth! I mean is that not sad and embarrassing and emblematic of the fact that we are not only not one nation under God but not remotely cognizant of God--not the God whom Christ called the Father--at all?
“My” walk has been the mile or so the bottom of the hill and down to the narrow winding country road to the little Valdez capilla (chapel) where I went for six o'clock Mass last night. Just before the turnoff, bordering the road, is a pasture of soft woolly lambs and sheep, some of whom have little bells around their necks that make the softest gentlest tinkling chime. And I have just stood there a couple of times and wept at these lambs. "I know my sheep and my sheep know me." When you really look at sheep they are just not all that smart. They walk in circles and bump into each other and go this way and that way, and follow wherever they’re led, and bleat. And that is us, that is humans, every human, underneath
I'm off at the crack of dawn Monday morning but am not going to race. It'll be two days at least back to L.A. and I may even stop over somewhere for a day to break up the approximately 1000-mile drive. There's always a moment at some wind-swept gas station, surrounded by strangers milling around and eating candy, when you feel utterly utterly alone in a way that is both kind of thrilling and kind of scary and sorrowful unto death. And when I'm reminded of my youth, and hitch-hiking up and down the Eastern seaboard, and out West with my friend Laura "looking for America."
Which sometimes I think is forever lost, if it ever existed, and sometimes I think I may, at last, have found.