Someone dear to me shared this poem with me to reflect on this Holy Week. I read, and read, and re-read it last evening before the beautiful Easter Vigil. I allowed the words of this poem, and the beautifully stunning words of our Easter Vigil liturgy sink down into my soul.
I tried to quiet my mind to all of my noise and let my only request of Him to be simple - "help me."
Help me, Lord, to stop trying to fix myself, myself. Help me to stop thinking that I can even do that at all, that I even have a chance without You. Nothing I do will be good enough. Help me, Lord, to stop trying to become perfect before coming to you, when you are the one to make me perfect. Help me, Lord, to stop trying to change what I think needs to be changed to step worthily into your presence. Help me, Lord to realize that my "acres (and acres and acres) of self that I tended with passion," is a toil in vain, for all of the work I can think of to do, could have been done by you by my simply asking. Help me, Lord, to stop turning over fields that have long since produced their harvest. Help me, Lord, to know that the "woods" of Your mercy are not frightening and an intimidating unknown. Help me, Lord, to "wander forever in a wilderness of [Your] mercy alone."
I am copying down in a book from my heart’s archive
The day that I ceased to fear God with a shadowy fear.
Would you name it the day that I measured my column of virtue
and sighted through windows of merit a crown that was near?
Ah, no, it was rather the day I began to see truly
That I came forth from nothing and ever toward nothingness
that the works of my hands are foolishness wrought in the
of the worthiest king in a kingdom that shall never end.
I rose up from the acres of self that I tended with passion
and defended with flurries of pride:
I walked out of myself and went into the woods of God’s
mercy, and here I abide.
There is a greenness and calmness and coolness,
a soft leafy
covering from judgment of sun overhead,
And the hush of His peace, and the moss of His mercy to
I have naught but my will seeking God;
even love burning in
me is a fragment of infinite loving
and never my own.
And I Fear God no more;
I go forward to wander forever
In a wildness of his His infinite mercy alone.
Jessica Powers, Sister Miriam of the Holy Spirit, O.C.D.