when I feel the urge to hide from the whole world and my imagination creates a mythical place far from everywhere, a place of peace and immeasurable quiet. And, for a moment, that “happy place,” which for me looks like a cabin by a small river at the edge of a woods, can be at least a temporary balm for those days when the world just seems too twisted to ever heal back into shape again.
It’s short lived, of course and my 4th floor apartment, nice enough with its view of the last remaining suburban corn field, rushes back the minute I open my eyes again. All I know, sometimes, though, is that I want to go somewhere or anywhere which isn’t whatever “here” is, a place far from voices, sales pitches, political yellers, and bad music made by thoughtless people.
Such a mystery it is, how God places people and times together. Of course, there’s never been a perfect time anywhere along the path of history so why should this “now” be the exception no matter how much I wish it so? Therefore, my only thought is that this time and this moment were somehow where I’m supposed to be and have become, in the great vastness of God’s design, the arena for my life and salvation. There will be no “long ago and far away” and perhaps no “happily ever after,” just responsibility to make the best of things and the promise of God’s presence as I try.
And I can survive if I remember the secret place of joy has never been “out there” so much as in a heart resting in God.
2 thoughts on “There are times…”
Oh, Father! I have always loved your posts, and I share your longing to get away from this modern life and enjoy the outlet of retreating to your own private peaceful place. But when you write, “There will be no “long ago and far away” and perhaps no “happily ever after,” it breaks my heart, because there is, there will be. Jesus our Lord will return and we, his beloved, will live in his beautifully recreated kingdom of God. We can’t have it now, as you said, yet we can enjoy a taste of it in our Father’s presence. But someday we will get to live there with our dear Lord.
Todays ‘Orthodox Quote of the Day’- Nevertheless, the demons’ power is no power. They exercise force through deception and wield a sword through a lie. This is why our Holy Fathers instruct us that their defeat is so easy. By the simple sign of the precious Cross, the demons and all their terror can be put to flight….. [Have a great day, Fr.]
Bishop Irenei Steenberg
The Beginnings of a Life of Prayer p.74