Do you recall the old parlor game when at a party a person was blindfolded and then asked to fall backwards without being able to see if anyone was there to catch them? Usually there was a fair amount of hooting and encouraging, and
amidst all that, someone was saying, “Don’t worry, we won’t let you fall and get hurt!” I was always amazed at how some people were completely loose and fell backward, apparently without any alarm. Others, in spite of assurances, only eased backward, never completely giving up control.
What does it take for one to grow to trust another person? I like to think of myself as a trusting guy, maybe at times even gullible. When younger, sometimes I expected another to meet unrealistic expectations—trusting they could, when maybe the expectations were unrealistic. Now a bit wiser, I hope I am more inclined to ask a person what he/she feels is a realistic expectation and in discussion, arrive at a point of trusting that the plan is a good one. So it might be accurate to say, one’s experience shapes how one trusts others.
In relationships, when a man or woman has been through the ending of a marriage in divorce very often coming out of it, learning to trust another is a slow process. The other day a parishioner asked to speak with me about a young man
who as a teenager had a painful experience in a Catholic School. Now, 20 years later, the man is still angry and untrusting of anything to do with Church. No doubt, you can think of a number of other examples. Once our expectations are unmet and/or our encounter is painful or unpleasant in any form, trust is damaged.
The fundamental question for anyone to consider is how much do I trust this God whom I love and serve? It is one thing for me to speak and write about this—that’s easy. It is another for me to put into practice an essential posture of
deep trust. What enables me to do so is remembering my own history, recalling all of the times through so many years when this all-knowing and merciful God has been there for me, comforting, guiding, forgiving, nourishing and calming the troubles of my mind and heart.
And how about you? Maybe your story is similar; you too need to remember your history, how much and how often God has been there in amazing and wonderful ways. It will be no different tomorrow! Sometimes in a moment of trouble, we are inclined to forget this precious history. Don’t do that! Remember that you are God’s precious child who lives and breathes because of God’s will and love. Moreover, never forget that you have a destiny to live with your Creator God forever. God would never want it otherwise.
At the dawn of each new day, I wonder if God is saying to each one of us, “It’s OK–go ahead, get up and get your feet on the floor and don’t be afraid! I’ve got your back. You will not fall and get hurt … trust Me.”
The Ascension of the Lord Thursday, May 13
or Weekend of May 15/16, 2021
Before he ascended into heaven, Jesus instructed his disciples to proclaim the Gospel to all
of creation. In the first reading, after Jesus’ ascent, the angels ask his disciples “Why do
you stand here staring at the skies?” The angels want them to look around themselves and
be assured that Christ is working through them.
The Ascension does not memorialize Christ leaving us. But instead, Christ working through us, his mystical body, his church. As stewards of this legacy, we too are called to proclaim the Gospel of Jesus Christ in our
words and actions; in how we live and how we treat others.
Are we sharing the life of Christ with others in our day-to-day lives? In what ways do we see ourselves proclaiming
the Gospel? In what ways can we do better.