Thursday, May 30, 2013

We Plant, We Water, but God Gives the Growth

The front of the Abbey chapel, with stone wall. Everything is crafted well, simply and carefully.

The good things come slowly.

I am featuring again a picture from the grounds of my favorite monastery, Holy Cross Abbey (Cistercians) in Berryville, Virginia. Monks know that good comes from silence, perseverance, the repetition of the same simple gestures, dedication to prayer day by day, month by month, year by year. They know the labor of sowing seeds that others may reap.

I am impatient about good things. I want them fast. I want my acorns to spring into fully formed oak trees. I want my prayers answered, NOW! I forget that one of God's favorite ways of answering a prayer is, "Ask Me again tomorrow."

Occasionally a good thing bursts upon us in a dramatic and sudden manifestation. God knows we need this sometimes or our weak, distracted nature would lose sight of the good altogether. But even when God works miracles, His deep message to us is, "Trust Me."

The good things grow slowly, with patience and care, if necessary with healing and correction.

So let us not lose patience. Sometimes it seems as if fire rains down on the earth. We feel overwhelmed. But let us tend this little piece of ground, this life that has been given us. Let us sow our seed and tend our shoots with fidelity and dedication to the task in front of us. God will give the growth.

The good things come slowly. But they are the things that endure.