Tuesday, December 14, 2010

St. John of the Cross and a Premature Baby

Late in the afternoon on Sunday, I sat in a chair at St. Louis Lambert Airport, waiting for my flight to board. The flights were delayed due to bad weather, but that was fine with me. I was hoping to get a call on my cell phone before boarding the plane (and hearing the flight crew's command to turn off all electronics). I held the phone in my right hand, ready to answer it the second I heard it ring.

I was waiting for my daughter to call and tell me that our second grandson had arrived safely into this world.

In my left hand, I held a book about The Ascent by St. John of the Cross. I willed my mind to engage the words of wisdom found there. It required effort - the proverbial balancing act between this world and that world. But somehow, by grace, I managed to think about both of these things with deep affection and attention.

It was the kind of moment that merits remembrance. A teaching moment, when the soul realizes that it is possible to have one foot in the joys of this world and one foot in the joys of the eternal world--and that the joy of the now does not eclipse the joy of the Eternal Now

And the call came. Little baby boy. 6 pounds, 8 ounces.

And the speaker announced that it was time to board the plane. I marked the page in The Ascent and stepped into line.

As the plane made its own ascent, I thought of my new grandson and prayed that he would live up to his name... a Hebrew name that means The Lord is my Life.

Blessed Feast of St. John of the Cross, 2010


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