This past month we started our retreat season here at Mater Dolorosa; the retreat center where I work. I use the word “work” in the most general sense, as most of the visitors consider the place close to the Garden of Eden. Almost every month someone does something to make the buildings and grounds more beautiful, today it was the blessing of a stained-glass window of the Woman at the Well, in commemoration of a prior Retreat Leader. I will post a photo of it in an upcoming UW.
It makes me think of my own journey and the journeys of others as we try and get closer to God throughout our spiritual lives on earth. For me at least, wanting to do my will, and now necessarily follow God’s has punctuated my journey over the years. Now, in my more mature years (read getting older), I can see the importance of those steps and the places where I held back, and those when I said the big “yes” to God, and let the cards fall where they may.
The following reflection is about how all we have to do is submit to the ever-present and everlasting love which God has placed right inside us. All we have to do is recognize it, and using the gifts given to us, try and follow without forcing our own desires on ourselves, and others. Food for thought?
Ocean of Love
I am a watcher by the stream,
longing for the cool, clear water to refresh me,
yet I cannot enter, for fear of where it will take me
dissolving my will
losing my status
to a journey and a path I cannot control.
So many others line the stream,
friends, others I don’t yet know, watch it, mesmerized it seems
by the sound of water and the eternal nature of its path.
Still I stand, now noticing all around me,
all transfixed on its path.
After some time, years or maybe seconds,
I suddenly jump in and find myself taken,
first scared as I am carried without a guide through white waters
in a seemingly uncontrolled ride.
Then suddenly, I am protected,
and the coolness turns to warmth as I enter the river.
And a sense of oneness overcomes me.
I feel the divine as God enters my soul
as a light ravishing me,
I continue to dissolve in His presence,
illuminating cold and empty places I dwelt moments before.
For all is now forgotten as I drift along an ever-slowing river.
Noticing others around me,
a communion of like souls drawn together,
as a salty taste fills the air,
we near the ocean of love.
The ocean where each drop makes it mark,
fills it role,
makes the taste that is God Himself,
as this ocean is His, as we are His.
At last together.