In the Wake of the Storm: Poverty and St. Therese In the Wake of the Storm: Poverty and St. Therese

In these days leading up to the election, I’ve really wanted to be in high gear: praying, fasting, sacrificing for the future of our country. And I haven’t been. It seems like my own Hurricane Sandy has mixed up my personal life just enough to throw everything out of whack at this most critical time.

I overeat when I want to fast. I sleep when I want to pray. I soothe myself instead of offering it up. The winds of my fallen nature whip up the moment weariness sets in, and I feel as powerful as a toddler on a gusty day.

Even now, considering my goals for tomorrow, I feel defeated. If tomorrow is anything like the many, many days before, I will not be successful. I will not pray and fast and offer things up as I would like.

I wonder if any of our saint friends can relate. St. Therese comes to mind, and I come across a passage from one of her letters where she writes, “If you can bear in peace the trial of being displeasing to yourself, you offer a sweet shelter to Jesus. It is true that it hurts you to find yourself thrust outside the door of your own self, so to speak, but fear not; the poorer you become, the more Jesus will love you.”

I will try again tomorrow because I believe He wants me to, out of love. But when the winds come and my efforts are scattered like debris on the beach, I hope I have the courage to throw myself in the arms of our Lord, like Therese, like a baby, and trust that He loves me. Even though I have nothing. Perhaps because I have nothing.

Copyright 2012 Meg Matenaer