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Saturday, September 01, 2007

Blessed Be the Name of the Lord

Which is easier to say when He helps. And He has. And things are finally looking like we're going to climb out of this hole. We're going to be able to save the house, for which I am more grateful than I can express... but I'll try.

For the sake of privacy, I am not naming names, but if you helped out, I want to thank you from the bottom of my heart. I'm taking down my "appeal" in the sidebar, and removing the red text. The next few months will be tight still, but now we have reason to believe we're going to make it.

Now I want to say a few words about the spiritual journey that has accompanied this roller coaster ride. Maybe it's too personal, I don't know; but I'm going to post before I have a chance to second-guess whether it's airing laundry or giving testimony.

For the past few months, I've struggled. Really, really struggled. God has helped me so many times in the past that at first I didn't worry too much; but when it began to feel like quicksand and He still wasn't stepping in, or even giving any signs at all of having heard my prayers, I began to struggle with my faith itself. I even said a few words at one point, to God Himself, that I had to go to confession over. You see, I kept reading the scriptures about God coming to our assistance, if we pray. What father would give his son a stone? But that's what it seemed we were getting. It was looking inevitable that we would lose our house, and by now our credit has gone so far downhill that even the possibility of finding someone to rent us a place seemed unlikely. I cried and I shouted at the Lord: Why do You promise help and then not give it?

But then something happened. We reached the end of the line. And at the last minute, God came through. After months of not knowing God's ways -- and the worst part was not understanding why He was allowing us to go through this -- we have finally found some long term solutions that should keep us from being in such a bad situation again. And I think maybe, just maybe, I finally understand His why.

When you work hard to fix it, and it gets fixed, you gain self confidence with a sense that you did for yourself. But if you pray and pray and pray, and then at the very last possible moment through almost miraculous means, things fall into place that you never could have foreseen let alone arranged yourself, something important happens in your soul. You know, without any doubt, that it was God Himself that stepped in, and that all of the circumstances and people that made a difference were acting on His behalf. You can't give yourself the credit, and you can't be proud.

It is very humbling.

Some other good has come out of all this. I've started praying the psalms with a new vigor. And I've been startled to hear my pastor listen to the Holy Spirit in ways that cannot be explained in any other way. You see, last week he said something during Mass that boggled my mind. He stopped in the middle of what he was saying to tell us that we must put ourselves into God's hands because He puts Himself into our hands in the Holy Eucharist.

If you recall, this was what I had posted a week or so earlier on my blog. And my pastor does not read my blog. In fact, I checked my statistics, and nobody local outside my household had looked at my blog in over a week. The Holy Spirit is truly amazing. And so are those who listen to Him. So let me add Fr. Felipe to my list of thanks. And everyone who prayed. Obviously, though it wasn't obvious to me for a long time, our Savior was listening. God bless you and keep you in peace and grace.