There just ain't nothin' like Divine Mercy Sunday. God constantly finds ways to be awesome.
Since yesterday I was mulling over how it was time to go to confession. Thought about doing it yesterday, but I just wasn't in the zone. I figured I would jump in the long line this afternoon at the major Divine Mercy event at our Cathedral.
Ok. So, starting this morning I did more mulling. If you are anything like me, sometimes your prep for confession is bitingly obvious, and sometimes it is more of a spelunking challenge. Like, most of the challenge is "going in there." I am still, frankly, a bit messed up by my Lutheran upbringing when it comes to confession. Oh, sit back down, Lutheran friend. I just mean that I was so over-formed on the one hand on how everything I did was completely rotted out by sin so that I could not do one good thing, and on the other hand on how complete God's forgiveness is, that I am sometimes left feeling like I can't even breathe without sinning, but it doesn't really matter since God has already forgiven me. In short: I'm a wretch, but who cares!?
So it was kind of interesting today, of all days, how confession went. It was priest-pot luck at the Cathedral event, since you basically went to whichever one happened to be open at the moment you were next in line. I ended up with a priest whom I know (of), but had not confessed to in years. I started out with my planned lines, but then he started asking me things. My normal confessor almost never does that. And all of a sudden I moved away from the "I'm a wretch (but who cares)" mode I had kind if started out with, and started talking about that. I mean this mysterious path God has led me on for a year. I hadn't really intended to talk about that, although I had some references to it in my laundry list. And in a few short minutes, the priest still asking me things, we talked through the multiple steps of this arduous journey as if we were discussing driving directions to a place we both knew well. And then the priest tells me of an image the Lord is showing Him, and it is precisely how the Lord has given it to me to understand myself in this situation for several months. It was as if the Lord wanted to affirm through the mouth of his representative all the silent conversation we've had for months. And I just kept thinking, "I didn't mean to talk about this at all!" But the Lord knows exactly what my heart needs. And apparently, the Lord knows my heart needs to feel totally understood, enveloped, affirmed, accompanied, and sure that He's completely the boss of that.
So the upshot, the directive: stay with the joy. Examine it, delight in it. Play with God.
Which immediately reminds me of this: (Br. Neven Ivan, how I miss you!)
What is required to enter the kingdom of God is to become like a little
child. Little children don't worry over understanding things, because
they know to whom they look with trust and confidence. I don't care what else goes on, as long as I can see Your face. And even when I can't see It, I know where You are. Keeping myself safe and cared for is not my job, on this intensely internal spiritual level. You, Lord, are more present to me than I am to myself. Safe in Your embrace, I can do or say or risk anything You call me to. Anything.
Even holding a joy I can't explain.