A wise person said that one is either entering difficulty, going through it, or coming out of it.  Personally, I think that this has some application in my own life; however, I would not claim it as truth set in stone.  Difficult times do come and go like the ocean’s tide. Suffering is the biblical term and it has external and internal aspects.  Much has been written and spoken on this topic.  The internal aspect of suffering really demands patience and maturity, especially during times of uncertainty.  There are specific points along the journey when the way forward is unclear and by extension the future, too.  It is hard to discern my heart, and the heart of the one who promises to guide me along this path.  The quotation below is a masterful one that expresses this inner turmoil of following, seeking, and pursuing the Lord:

“My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think that I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so. But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you. And I hope I have that desire in all that I am doing. I hope that I will never do anything apart from that desire. And I know that if I do this you will lead me by the right road though I may know nothing about it. Therefore will I trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death. I will not fear, for you are ever with me, and you will never leave me to face my perils alone.”

(Thomas Merton, Thoughts on Solitude, 1956)

Thomas Merton on Living in Uncertainty


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