Tuesday, January 20, 2015

In Times of Trouble

Dear friends are struggling with the very sudden loss of a family member in a freak accident.  It came at a very difficult moment (not that there is an easy one) for at least one of these family members.  For several days before this she had been tending to her sick children, and she was exhausted. 

Although I am not Catholic, I recall years ago being struck by the story of St. Teresa of Ávila, who after being injured said, "Lord, you couldn't have picked a worse time for this to happen. Why did you let this happen."  The response to her prayer:  That is how I treat my friends.  To which she is said to have replied, "That is why you have so few of them!"  Humor notwithstanding, there is, to me, a clear sense that the answer was not that God gave her the troubles, but that there were answers, that she was not alone.

I love the many stories of life after life and what those who have "died" have to say about the peace and the love they experienced as they journeyed on before coming back.  It assures me that it is highly likely the ones we see as "lost" do not see themselves that way.  As a caterpillar changes from one form to another and as a baby ends one existence for another outside the womb, so it seems likely that those we see as "gone" go on.  The hardship is for those left behind. 

Is there a way to find peace?  And is there a way to offer real comfort for those who are struggling with the sense of loss? The only answer I know is Love.  Love and more love.  Not pity, not sympathy, but love.

In times of trouble we may discover we are stronger than we believed.  That a greater power is holding us up.  That we can feel peace in the midst of hell.  That somehow we know it will all work out, even though at the moment the loss seems unbearable.  That "why" may not be answered, but the how to get through will be given. 

Sometimes these things come as a ray of light in the utter darkness.  Other times it seems we have to struggle to gain our answers and peace.

After struggling a full day for answers, for a way to bring comfort, a way to pray, peace came. 

As so many have told us, the answer is Love.  In times of trouble.  Love.
Prayer is an act of love, words are not needed. Even if sickness distracts from thoughts, all that is needed is the will to love. St. Teresa of Avila
Charity [Love] never faileth.  1 Cor. 13
Holding all of the Beaulieu family and Goulds close in thought with prayers of deep love.


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