Unshakable Inner Peace
Sometimes life creates a lot of pressure on us. This might be a new trial, the illness of a loved one, where we feel the pain through our hearts, or something unexpected in our lives. Learning to accept these trials with fortitude and courage is one way of dealing with them. Putting on a brave face, sometimes not even communicating the problem to others, as if there is some shame associated with whatever is happening.
At times such as this, we can react in many ways; sharing with a close number of friends who provide the love and support we need, shutting down, and trying to keep this pain a secret. Sometimes a mixture of all three. One reaction is to turn to God. Turn to God and ask for help in the matter, to cure the illness, fix the pain, save the day. We get out our ATM Prayer card and request results for either ourselves or others. Such is the power and tradition of intercessory and petitionary prayer in our faith. There is nothing wrong with this approach.
However, we should notice those in the world who never seem to be shaken no matter what happens to them. I continue to be amazed in my ministry at the resilience of those who can deal with terrible situations and still “go on.” They have something which the saints have, and that something is unshakable inner peace. A peace which only emanates from a deep, intimate and incredibly close relationship with God.
We live in a society which expects results and wants them quickly. From the doctor, the mechanic, our investments, the plumber. Everyone seems to be on call for us, mainly when we are in need. Yet, we know, in our hearts, we cannot have such demands in our relationship with God. We cannot control God, yet we request these results immediately. We all know what “friends” are like who only call us when they need something, I certainly have family members who I know need something when they make contact. It is not a good feeling to be used or called just for this purpose.
So this week, let us make some visits to God without the requests, the demands, the needs. And just be present with Him for the sake of our own loving relationship with him. Let us deepen our feelings towards God, surrendering as St. Theresa of Avila invites us. To leave love to the master of love, and let His love flow into us, unimpeded by a cluster of requests. Then, perhaps one day, we will savor that same unshakable inner peace for which we all yearn.
Sometimes it’s better just to run,
When the pain is too great,
And we need to return to the source,
The Womb, from whence we came.
And take a rest for a while,
Enjoying the place we momentarily forgot,
Copyright 2019 Reflection, Poem and Photography by Michael J. Cunningham O.F.S.