Community is a great joy and also a great challenge.
Interpersonal relationships both support us and constantly call us to a deeper self-gift. We live out community in an atmosphere of silence and solitude, prayer and work, often sharing dialogues and in the many small exchanges of daily life, in which love is proven and purified.
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“If this day you only knew what makes for peace” Lk 19, 42
Every time I hear this passage I feel like it´s personally addressed to me. That does not exclude you, of course; it does not exclude anyone. The search for peace is a feature of our time, probably because we have lost it; it´s hidden from our eyes, as the Lord says.
We want to feel safe, protected. We would like to have some kind of insurance policy where it´s written: “All shall be well”. And we want that not only for ourselves, but for the ones we love. With that great desire, I was provided with good education, high values and goals, but soon I realized that it wouldn´t work, it was not enough. I stepped out of the most current ways to follow Jesus with one unuttered but burning question: “Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?” (Lk 8, 20)
God has a very particular way to answer our questions. I won´t try to define his “modus operandi”, because it surpasses me by far, but his “style” of response is more a path than a definition. I followed that path and it led me from a missionary congregation to a monastery, from Madrid, Spain, to Crozet, Virginia. How? Listening to his whispering voice in the Church, his Word, my heart…
In our ordinary life I continue my quest for peace; praying, working, striving with my sisters, and giving thanks for them and all the good things that God has given and is giving me. I just begin to discover that peace is embracing life as it is, Life as it is, and loving it profoundly because it´s in this life where we find God, God finds us, and in him, all.
“I have found him”, she says, “I have found him”, though previously he sought and found me like a stray sheep, like a lost coin, and in his mercy anticipated me. (…)He found me not that I might choose him but that he might choose me. He anticipated me that he might love me before I loved him.
In this way, then, chosen and loved, sought and acquired, found and anticipated, how should I not love and seek him with an effort according to my strength and with affection beyond my strength? I will seek him until gaining my desire I may utter my cry of happiness: “I have found him whom my soul loves”. Gilbert of Hoyland Sermon on the Song of Songs 8.8