It’s The Little Things

23 Apr

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I was at a job interview/trial run with a family down in the Peninsula all weekend. Slipped into a tiny cafe in San Francisco for some coffee when I got off the train this morning, and this candle was burning on my table.

It will be a few days before I know if I got the job, and I’m anxious.

But this tiny little candle (and it was the only one in the cafe; I asked) comforted me.

I walked around the block to a tiny parish I had spied earlier, and knelt in the closest pew. There’s something about old churches. They smell like old prayers and years of faith. No flashy new programs can make up for that.

It was awkward. It’s been far too long since I’ve just sat and prayed.

I left my suitcase in the aisle and knocked on the rectory door. Confession. I needed it. Desperately.

And the kindest, sweetest priest I’ve ever met, welcomed me in, his eyes overwhelmingly compassionate as I started crying, right there on his doorstep. He reached for his stole without me needing to say a word, and walked with me back to his office.

I didn’t have anything horrific to confess. But he listened, nodded, prayed.

And as I walked back into the sanctuary to do penance, I saw the following inscription under one of the stained glass windows:

“You have made us for yourself, oh Lord. Our hearts are restless until they rest in you.”

One year ago today I felt the waters of baptism. I’ll never recapture that feeling again. And that’s okay. The memories of childhood bliss don’t propel me forward in adulthood. But I can look back on them, and be anchored in the knowledge that I have family, I have friends, and I have faith.

This week I’m striving to stop my restlessness.

Even in the midst of change and uncertainty, I can find peace, and strength, and rest.

Let my heart rest.

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4 Responses to “It’s The Little Things”

  1. Warm Southern Breeze April 23, 2012 at 6:27 pm #

    Yes, in the midst of turmoil, we can have peace. During my routine this morning, I was impressed that I needed to apologize to someone. It wasn’t an issue that I perceived wherein my apology would have made any significant difference, but rather, one that I only needed. I too, shall confess, though in my heart, I sensed that I should do that first. I shall go to confession tomorrow.

    In a somewhat related manner, I thought of the 2006 motion picture “The Pursuit of Happyness.” Enjoy a glass of wine tonight.

  2. Kimberlie April 23, 2012 at 8:30 pm #

    Oh good grief! This is the 3rd time I have tried to post a comment. Well, here’s the super short version: Love you heaps! Been praying for you all day as I remember your “anniversary!” Call me when you have a moment.

  3. priest's wife (@byzcathwife) May 4, 2012 at 6:46 pm #

    woo hoo for confession!

  4. Cléo May 9, 2012 at 9:30 am #

    Beautiful little story.

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