August Lectio Divina and Oblate Discussion
Sources: Lectio Divina, Ecclesiastes 3:1-11, There is a time for everything under the heavens.
Come, let us worship God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating hand.-Antiphon, Week 3 Saturday
Such an affirming antiphon for times when I think I am the glue that holds all things together. I am most definitely not. It is God who holds the world and its wonders in his creating head. And I just need to remember.
This morning, I remind myself of this as feelings of guilt creep in that I have not posted on behalf of my oblate family since April. Much has happened in this time for me: I finished a year of teaching during during a pandemic (how many people can say that?), I led a retreat, I went to a retreat, I helped my daughter plan her summer wedding, I helped my parents with health issues that surprised us ten days before the wedding AND most wonderfully, we celebrated the marriage of our daughter, Jessica, to John Holland. It has been a summer full of ALL of the emotions.
Much as happened, we can assume, in each of our lives. Knowing this, we can give ourselves and others compassion when we feel we are falling short, when we don’t meet the expectations we have placed on ourselves. Each of us has a story. There is a time for everything, and how wonderfully TIMELY is our lectio reading for today:
Oh, how we struggle with wanting to control timing, knowing that God’s time is not necessarily our time. It’s hard to keep our mouth shut (literally and metaphorically) because we feel have so much wisdom, we know what is best for us. Acceptance of what it is, believing that “this too shall pass,” is the antidote to hopelessness. There is a time for everything. We will experience it all. We can not have all laughing without some mourning. We cannot always speak, we must be silent too.
We think we know what is best for ourselves rather than what God has given us. St. Benedict writes about balance, as it is written in Ecclesiastes. It can be a comfort when we are down, that there will come a time to laugh, to dance, to heal. We will not experience exclusively the light without the dark. The opposites are how we experience life–we understand what peace can give us when there is time of war. We are given free will, so the dark and the light exist naturally. We cannot fight against the darkess. Sometimes we just endure it.
We must remember that each of us is experience light and darkness in our daily life, and be compassionate towards those who are in a dark place. It will visit us soon too. Walking through the darkness with another is a spiritual gift–it can change us. God uses it all–we experience the polarities within ourselves and in community.
And yet God has put timelessness within us. What does this mean? How can we experience this? The gift of lectio divina is a new or renewed understanding and also the opportunity to continue to grow, learn and question how God is working in our lives.
Oblates of Christ the King Priory welcomed three novices for the Final Oblation on July 18, 2021.
Charles Adams – John Bellavia – Steve Foral – Jaime Williams