Tuesday, November 14, 2017

Today's post soundtrack:

It's only Tuesday, but this week's been one of those that has my head in a deep fog.

Tired isn't even really the word to describe what I'm feeling—fatigue, perhaps, but a spiritual fatigue.

Do you ever just feel yourself marinating in discomfort? There's a million prayers on your mind, and none of them are especially urgent, per say, but you just feel... uncomfortable. And you're just soaking in it... it's pruning your fingertips and penetrating your pores until it's all you can bear to think about. Get me out of this, you pray. Please release me from this funk. And yet, there you sit.

Fr. Mike Schmitz said in a homily a few weeks back that oftentimes, when one successfully identifies and addresses some major sin in his life that's keeping him from God, he finds that a bunch of other little things also keeping him from God will suddenly present themselves. It's probably that whole "scales on your eyes" thing... when you remove one or two, they all start to fall.

Which, let me just say, is a wonderful thing. It's something to celebrate. Just the same, it's also a recipe for ample discomfort—because when the scales fall, you're no longer ignorant.

And that's uncomfortable.

Ugh. Ughhh. That seems to be the sound I'm making most this week. And the word "lament" keeps coming to mind... I'm lamenting. I know I'm lamenting. I feel sorry that I'm lamenting.

So I googled "lamenting," because that's what I do when I keep thinking about stuff—I google it.

And our good Lord in all His glory gave me the response I needed—a sermon by Pope Francis from June of 2013, in which he said, "A priest I know once said to a woman who lamented to God about her misfortune, ‘but, madam, that is a form of prayer, go ahead with it.' To lament before God is not a sin."

He went on to talk about the third chapter of Tobit—when both Tobit and Sarah lament to God, praying for death in desperation. The Lord answered their prayers with blessings:

At that very time, the prayer of both of them was heard in the glorious presence of God.
So Raphael was sent to heal them both: to remove the white scales from Tobit’s eyes, so that he might again see with his own eyes God’s light; and to give Sarah, the daughter of Raguel, as a wife to Tobiah, the son of Tobit, and to rid her of the wicked demon Asmodeus. For it fell to Tobiah’s lot* to claim her before any others who might wish to marry her.
At that very moment Tobit turned from the courtyard to his house, and Raguel’s daughter Sarah came down from the upstairs room.

So let us lament.

Let us complain to God about our discomforts, because He hears them; and in His infinite perfection, He answers our prayers with the grace and blessings we need to move on from lamenting.

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