Our wise old Church has discovered that if you will act as if you believed belief will be granted to you; if you pray with doubt, but pray with sincerity, your doubt will be dispelled; if you will surrender yourself to the beautify of that liturgy the power of which over the human spirit has been proved by the experience of the ages, peace will descend upon you.
--Father Ensheim to Larry in The Razor's Edge, a novel by W. Somerset Maugham
Good writer, Maugham. I've read this book several times, and some of his short stories -- Miss Thompson comes to mind -- but don't know much about him and don't really care to at this point so if you'd refrain from commenting about him I'd appreciate it.
I'd rather believe his words, given to the fictional Father Ensheim to the equally fictitious Larry Darnell, were somehow inspired by God...Who seems, for the moment, to have forsaken me.
Yes, indeed. Of all people, Kelly Thatcher, aka Patricia Lynn Marie Kelly Clark Thatcher, is...doubting.
I don't want to doubt. I love my God...who seems to have left me alone. Temporarily, one hopes. The only times, lately (and let's not get all dramatic about this...it's only happened within the past few days...or has it been months, sporadically spaced?) I've found solace is when I'm in the Presence of Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament and guess what? My life choices have made 24/7 Presence not exactly possible.
So. I'm doubting. I'm praying. And oddly enough, I believe my prayers are heard. Mary, for example, seems to understand. But God? My Father? My Abba? Where is He?
Where the bleep ARE You?
It's funny, really. And I mean funny, in a humorous way. Dark humor, no doubt, but still...wasn't it just last Sunday night that I pondered, with the help of the Pope's book Jesus of Nazareth: Holy Week, Jesus crying out the words of Psalm 22? And smugly, if it must be confessed, completely understanding the fact that this most lovable, most adorable, God-made-Man was taking on Himself all of my fears, all of Israel's fears...all of my sins.
I have committed so many sins. Only a God could withstand them all.
Yes, I know that to deny God's merciful love is the greatest sin of all. Yet knowing that, how easy it is to fall into this denial.
I'm hanging on by my fingernails to prevent this fall. Intellectually, I know that God my Father knows this. 'Course, intellectually, I know that E=MC squared but am at a loss to explain it. Or to understand it.
I really don't like this.
Yet, what is my loneliness to compare with that of Jesus on the Cross? Nothing, I know that. Am I wallowing in self-pity? Indeed, I believe I am.
Yes, yes, I know about Mother Teresa, John of the Cross, all of them.
To put it bluntly: what have they to do with me? I'm no saint. I'm not a missionary, a thinker, a doctor of the Church.
But DAMMIT, I AM a child of God! Even I, like the Canaanite woman and her daughter, get, like the dogs, the scraps from the table of the saints. Or should.
Well, this selfish tirade (only it's not really a tirade...I'm too weary for that just now) has certainly gone on long enough. I plan to post this silly--very silly--blog, share it, perhaps...and hope.
And pray. With sincerity. As if I believe my doubt will be dispelled.