Sunday, April 22, 2012


It's been an interesting week. Some good things have happened and some bad things have happened and some very stressful things which are ultimately good have happened. Part of me would like to be more specific, but I am not going to share the details right now.

Today, however, I had a kind of spiritual epiphany. The background: As I've mentioned before, I have had depression on and off over the past few years, and even in the times when I'm not actually depressed, there are bad days. Bad days often manifest themselves in despair and the desire to quit current major life projects (school, romantic relationship) for no reason. I was talking to A once about vocations, and saying that I needed to find something that I could live with on bad days as well as good, because I would always have bad days. He said that this was an entirely too negative way of looking at the future. I disagreed. We let it go.

Fast forward to today. I was walking to Mass, thinking about depression and the shadow it has left on my life, and thinking about the future, and I thought, "Some darkness just never goes away." Then I thought of John 1:5: "And the light shone in the darkness, and the darkness comprehended it not." And two things occurred to me.

First of all, darkness does not understand light. No wonder I don't know what God is doing. He is light, and there is so much darkness in my life. Secondly, darkness cannot overpower light. Light always wins. If the darkness never goes away, it's not because it lost the battle with the light, it's because I held the door and windows closed and refused to let the light shine in.

This afternoon I went to an area meeting of People of Praise, a charismatic Christian group. From some of the things the people said I gained a few additional pieces to the puzzle. One man got up and said that the Lord had moved him to share that His forgiveness was so perfect that there was nothing you could do that made it impossible to start over. Another said that God's forgiveness was a perfect forgiveness, and the belief that your relationship with God was damaged if you had sinned and been forgiven was a lie. And the frequent requests for the Holy Spirit to come helped me to ask God to shine His light into my darkness. I imagined myself opening the door to a closet containing the things I try to keep secret from God and letting Him in.

So overall, this is what today has taught me: A was right. There don't always have to be bad days. I can't get rid of them, but God can.

I have always known this, but today I think I started to believe it.

Monday, April 9, 2012


I need to post here more regularly.....

Easter was wonderful. My mother and my sisters S (my twin) and J (8yo) came up to visit. So did K. Most of my friends stayed on campus for Easter, and we had a relaxed and prayerful weekend. Not much homework was done.

My school does a really good job with Easter. We have morning prayer for the Triduum, the normal Triduum liturgies (Holy Thursday/Good Friday/Stations), Tenebrae, Easter Vigil (with 7 OT readings), and four Easter Sunday Masses. The regular Sunday evening Vespers are especially solemn on Easter. Our main church has several choirs, which are really good, and the liturgical style is very solemn, respectful, and prayerful. I spent a lot of time in church this weekend (6.5 hours in church or church-related things on Friday alone :o). At the last minute K was able to stay for the Easter Vigil--his first ever!

This was a socially and spiritually productive weekend for me. My family got to know my friends a bit better, and got to meet K for the first time. (Verdict: Mutual like and desire to get to know better. Yay!) I got to know K better and spend time with him. (I do not think I get to do this enough. Stupid four hours.) And I think I grew in faith.

It's interesting to me how my relationships teach me about God. This weekend this was most clear in the cases of J and K. I was sitting next to J thinking about how much I loved her, and it occurred to me that if I, an imperfect creature, can love someone this much despite her imperfection, then God, Who is perfect love, must be able to love me too. Obvious? Probably, but this idea that God loves me does not come naturally to me. As for K, the fact that he's mine when I have done nothing to deserve him makes it easier to believe in grace. How do religions where God isn't a person make themselves believable?