I find myself on the last stretch of my journey in life, and I don’t know what is awaiting me...I know, however, that the light of God exists, that he is risen, that his light is stronger than any darkness and that God’s goodness is stronger than any evil in this world, and this helps me go forward with certainty.--Pope Benedict, on his 85th birthday
I'm not sure that I am on the last stretch of my journey in life, although none of us knows that, regardless of our age, but I can certainly identify with Pope Benedict's feelings.
I don't know what's awaiting me....I've been reading books on how life changes after the death of a parent and the one thing they all say is that when your last parent dies, your world changes forever. I'm certainly finding that to be true. Even though the woman who was my mother had been gone for some time before she went to the next life, her physical absence from my life has left a huge gaping hole. She was, as the French say, "formidable!" and I always lived a bit in her shadow. Now there is no shadow to hide me from the relentless glare. I used to be able to measure what was coming next by what was happening with her, but now I have no idea what lies ahead, what's awaiting me.
I know, however, that the light of God exists...his light is stronger than any darkness...In these past few months, I have been griefwalking unto God. In ways that I have never experienced before, I have been poured out, an oblation of suffering. In my feelings of utter aloneness, the only flicker of light that I have seen has come when I catch a small glimpse of the Divine. The light is sometimes quite faint, only a pin prick in the dark, but it has been there, a tiny star in the seemingly endless void of loss, change, sorrow, fear, panic and sadness.
this helps me go forward with certainty...I'm not exactly going forward with certainty. More like stumbling along like I have emotional vertigo and am trying to walk along the edge of an active volcano. But I am beginning to learn that courage and faith aren't like bank accounts. I can't begin saving them for when I might need them. They are manna, daily bread. I can only have enough courage, enough faith, and perhaps enough certainty for this moment. Not a day from now. Not an hour from now. Not even a minute from now. Just enough for right now. Perhaps that is the only way to move forward...one moment at a time.