What a blessed day! The consecrated Catholic hermit nothing is in civilization for four whole days, including this St. Patrick's celebration. He is one great mystic, bishop, leader, contemplative--and not even an Irishman other than by placement...by God!
Having a hot shower after three weeks without, having plenty of running water after four days without, getting some antibiotic ointment for a cut starting to fester--what glorious comforts, and who of any of us deserves such goodness? But we are blessed in the Lord and blessed as His children!
Toward the end of the day, the reminder came of this year and thirty years prior. Yes, it is the 30th anniversary of when the nothing Catholic hermit's spouse left for the final time--the nothing and their three, beautiful, young children. The next day, one of the children returned from public school saying the teacher had talked about St. Patrick getting rid of the snakes in Ireland. "We got rid of our snake, didn't we," she said--more a statement than question.
It was all very sad, actually, despite relief from the abuse and strain. The sorrow of four lives cast down by one who made choices that the rest of us could not do anything about...it affected and still does in yet-unexpected ways. Those 30 years ago, the eldest was not quite nine, the next just seven, and the youngest not yet two. The nothing was stricken with constant pain from the car accident that past August. By September the spouse had come home from work one day, late per usual, and declared did not want to be married anymore and was going to begin a new "era of honesty."
What issued forth was some honesty, but not all of it. More was to be learned later. Infidelities were admitted to, from the too-brief engagement period throughout the not-quite eleven years of marriage, as well as various other fabrications and twisted realities, large and small. It all a terrible shock, brought to its end so soon after the unrelenting pain of the car accident. And the innocent children--!
Not to go back over it, though, 'tis best.
Rather, it is always best to remain in the Order of the Present Moment, of which the moment marvels at the ability to forgive and to praise God for His graces and favors of this now very nothing consecrated Catholic hermit. He swooped it out of abuse of all manners and provided for it through painful back surgeries, death in recovery room, the sending back to rear the children and fulfill its mission in life.
Yes, in this life, now, and through all kinds of strange, wondrous, harrowing, and lesson-learning experiences, we (His Real Presence, the now-adult children, and this now-hermit) have come in these past 30 years. So many good friends, strangers, and beloved family members outweigh the actions of one. It was all God's allowance for something far better: intimacy with the Beloved, the One and Only Holy and Perfect Spouse.
When the hermit considers St. Patrick's secure and privileged childhood, and then his being taken as a slave to the rough unknowns and wilderness of Ireland--and how God provided for him and loved him and graced him with gifts and His mercy...just makes all seem very good indeed, in life then and now.
Spoke on the phone with the spiritual father, many miles away. Will we ever meet face-to-face again in this life? What matter does that make? Nothing thanked him for the St. Patrick's note and personal message. No, the house will not be finished by Easter, but there is a hope to have it done in time for his priestly ordination anniversary. Who knows?
There yet is so much work to be done, but since recovering from the pneumonia--thanks be to God and the spiritual father's prayers and those of many other friends and family--it seems the work-progress in the hermitage bears much fruit.
The spiritual father is reading a book on the Trinity for Lent and reminds the nothing consecrated Catholic hermit to "keep the faith." The book, he said, is of the love of God and sets forth from the premise that Vatican II's main purpose was to instill in the faithful a deep love of God and to grow in the faith and be uplifted, one and all, in unity--seeking God above all things. Tomorrow he will be preaching on how we know God by knowing Jesus Christ.
Yes, it all runs in the theme of the currents of this very life, and of the spiritual understanding and realities. Nothing told him of having learned how to plumb to code, and also had written more of the laws and codes researched documentation from plumbing to the institutes of the Church. And what is the end result? Nothing new in the machinations of mankind: Some primarily see and thrive on the temporal glue and others see and fly on the spiritual view. Glue and view each are part of our lives.
But the spiritual father said how boring and dull is Canon Law, and the nothing Catholic hermit said it had sopped up enough of plumbing code, as well, enough to be eagerly awaiting the mystery of hot, running water...and to crave the writings on the great mystic "Pseudo-Dionysius" on the Divine Names and Mystical Theology and the Angelic Hierarchy.... Whoever he is and was, that is, this writer of the early Church, nothing much known of him other than speculative details--but the richness and mystery of his inspired writings.
"Keep the Faith!", the spiritual father intoned once again, near the end of our conversation. "Spring is soon to come! Stick with the reading and be done with that other--does not bring one to intimacy with God. Write the spiritual," he added.
We discussed briefly how awesome is Jesus Christ--how much we love Him. He was quite some man--no one ever got the upper hand with Jesus, not even when they crucified Him. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one goes to the Father except through Jesus, the Son.
Called the electrician of whom it took a day of rest and prayer to grapple with the frustration of the ups and downs in work ethic, the challenge of bearing with others who God has in our lives for good reasons even if we do not realize exactly what they may be--other than always to pray for them and examine our own flaws while we're at it.
May we bear with others who have borne with us--bear them like crosses that they sometimes can be, and pray them to Jesus' heart in paradise. May those of whom we are in their lives for some reason, bear us and pray us, likewise....
Goodness and mercy in this life, from, with, in Christ. Jesus Is All to this nothing Catholic hermit. Life in Him is good. May it be so for you, dear readers, and for those who need our forgiveness, whether or not they want it or think it necessary--and may the Lord forgive us our faults--those we see and do not see that we carry with us, like skin cells we don't notice until we've had a good, hot shower after a long time without.
God bless His Real Presence in us! Little children, let us love one another! Remain in His Love! St. Patrick, please pray for us, too, and help us rid the snakes within us that tempt and torment our souls. Grace us with Thy spiritual view, Dear Lord Jesus, as St. Patrick was given.