Sunday, July 19, 2009

Sunny Days

Usually summers in DC are pretty unbearable. It's one of the first things people say after you say, 'oh, I live in DC.' They usually respond with- 'oh, cool! But the summers are so humid...'. I've spent about 10 summers in DC now, and this is the first one that has actually been relatively mild! It's still hot, like 80's, but there is a cool breeze that definitely makes the heat more bearable.

I feel like that 'cool breeze' is what I've been asking God for lately. After the acceptance of 'this is where I'm supposed to be, even if I'm not super excited about it' there still is that prayer of, 'okay, God. But a little consolation would be nice!'. The 'cool breeze' is like the consolation that makes the 'heat' or this 'waiting period' a little more bearable in my life.

Again, I hope I'm not being dramatic. MY LIFE IS NOT UNBEARABLE. But I certain have been praying for consolation, just some reminder of the hope and promise that I am trusting in.

"Sunny Days"- Jars of Clay

sunny days keepin' the clouds away
i think we’re coming to a clearing and a brighter day
so far away and still i think they say
the wait will make the heart grow stronger
or fonder, i can’t quite remember, anyway

so if you’re waitin' for love
well, it’s a promise i'll keep
if you don’t mind believing that it changes everything
time will never matter

winter, spring -- is what love can truly bring
ice turns to water; water flows to everything
you can lose your mind
maybe then your heart, you’ll find
i hope you won’t give up what’s movin' you inside -- no

if the car won’t start when you turn the key
when the music comes on, all your cold, cold heart can do
is skip a beat

it’s a promise i'll keep when you’re waitin' for love
if you don’t mind believing that it changes everything
time will never matter (time will never matter)

This song is on the Jars of Clay album, 'Who We Are Instead' that I bought in 2003- the year I was on NET. I love Jars of Clay's lyrics because though they are Christian, they aren't in-your-face-Christian. And they can be interpreted in many ways, even years later.

This song was not one of the ones that spoke to me back then. But it's one that I've re-discovered recently, and I'm sure you can see why I'm loving it now!

"The wait will make heart grow stronger"

Mmmm...good to know the wait is good for something!

"If you are waitin' for love, it's a promise I'll keep"

I hope so Jesus! But the next line is OUR part of the deal-

"If you don't mind believin' that it changes everything. And time will never matter".

Before I entered the convent, it was easy to see how my commitment to love- the love I have for Jesus would 'change everything'. And it took some struggle to come to terms with some of those changes (some which I never could quite come to terms with, hence, the departure a year later), but ultimately when I said 'yes' to trying, I didn't mind believing that things would change. But the changes were a little more dramatic and visible.

Now, I say want change, but if I'm really honest with myself... I've just gotten comfortable again. So this 'not minding that love changes everything' part- it's harder than it seems. And God, I'm sure, wants to honor that for me. Which is why I'm probably in this holding period, even though I'm struggling to get out.

Regardless, this song makes so much sense and gives hope. I'm waiting for the car to start and that 'music to come on' which will make 'my heart skip a beat'. I like that image. Our hearts skip a beat and jump when things are unexpected....

End reflection #1 :). Now onto my next update/randomn thoughts!

Last week I also finished my St. Joseph novena. I do think I've gotten some consolation. I still need to practice patience, but today at Mass I felt a little bit closer to Jesus, and I like to think that is St. Joseph's doing :)

And...Gina from my women's group brought us a little St. Joseph to keep in our house! I was so touched by the gift! And on the day after I finished my novena! Thanks, Gina! You are the best and so thoughtful.

Sunny Days are HERE and also even more are on their way. We just have to keep the faith!

Which brings me to my last point for this blog...

I LOVE this movie- Keeping the Faith with Ed Norton, Ben Stiller, and Jenna Elfman. I must've watched it a buhzillion times in college and surprsingly (or not at all ;) in the convent as well.

I love it because it really discusses vocations in a real and deep way (but is super funny!). It points out the struggles for single, married, and religious vocations. The workaholic Anna who is the typical 'single', Jake who is discerning marriage, and Brian who is the vowed religious. They all question their vocations at different times, and there are many scenes that stand out- in particularly the one where Anna and Jake are in a fight in Anna's apartment, 'discerning' their relationship, and also one where Brian is talking to the pastor of his parish.

Today when I was watching it, for the buzillion-and-one time, the latter scene really stood out for me. Brian is telling the pastor about his confusion of his feelings for Anna, and the pastor says something really powerful about our vocations. I wished I could find this quote on, but alas- you'll have to settle for my paraphrasing-

It was something about how we have to choose our vocations EACH DAY. It's not like you choose once and you're done. I could see this to be true when I was trying out religious life, but it really hit home today for me for some reason.

Anyways, take that for what it's worth. "I think we're coming to a clearing and a brighter day" :)

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