In June of 2011 I had the amazing gift of attending the Storyline Conference hosted by Donald Miller, author of Blue Like Jazz and A Million Miles in a Thousand Years. The conference is an amazing few days of doing some in depth work on “LIFE”, answering the questions: Who are you? What do you want? How can you redeem your suffering? How good are your relationships?
One of the many take away messages for me (and there were MANY) was found in this prayer by Jesuit priest, Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.
Above all, trust in the slow work of God.
We are quite naturally impatient in everything
to reach the end without delay.
We should like to skip the intermediate stages.
We are impatient of being on the way to something
unknown, something new.
And yet it is the law of all progress
that it is made by passing through
some stages of instability—
and that it may take a very long time.
And so I think it is with you;
your ideas mature gradually—let them grow,
let them shape themselves, without undue haste.
Don’t try to force them on,
as though you could be today what time
(that is to say, grace and circumstances
acting on your own good will)
will make of you tomorrow.
Only God could say what this new spirit
gradually forming within you will be.
Give Our Lord the benefit of believing
that his hand is leading you,
and accept the anxiety of feeling yourself
in suspense and incomplete.
—Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, SJ
As I passed the field and tree above this morning, I gasped a bit. A solitary tree, somewhat fogged in with a forest in the background. Interviewing for a job today and feel a bit like this image. Out there alone, fog surrounding with lots of unknowns and fears, but knowing the “forest”, the amazing community and support systems in my life, are there on the sidelines. I can feel it, even when my knees are knocking together. The prayer Pierre Teilhard de Chardin wrote encapsulates today in words that I just don’t have. I hope it touches you too.