sometimes the heavens seem silent and closed.
At other times we hear you speaking,
We sense you are with us.
We know your delight.
Whatever be our experience of you,
enable us to trust your loving presence.
We pray through Jesus Christ.
Now when all the people were baptized, and when Jesus also had been baptized and was praying, the heaven was open, and the Holy Spirit descended upon him in bodily form like a dove. And a voice came from heaven, “You are my beloved Son; with you I am well pleased.”
(Luke 3: 21-22)
Jesus shows us not to take our primary cue from the people around us or the tracks below us but to look to the heavens, to scan the skies for the signs of the Spirit and to bend our ears to the Divine Voice.
There will be days when the heavens are silent, the skies are dark and the Spirit seems to be absent. During such a time in the Second World War a person scratched these hopeful words onto a wall in a Warsaw ghetto:
I believe in the sun, even if it does not shine.
I believe in love, even if I do not feel it.
I believe in God, even if I do not see him.
The bleak forces of oppression, war, misery and hunger can erode our belief that God is present and at work. Faith involves hanging on in the dark to what we have been shown in the light.
Thomas Merton discovered his vocation in a life devoted to prayer. Secluded in the hills of Kentucky one could readily think that prayer would be easy and direction would always be crystal clear. However, Merton went through times of dark depression and in one difficult period he penned the following prayer:
“Our Lord God, we have no idea where we are going.
We do not see the road ahead of us.
We cannot know for certain where it will end.
Nor do we really know ourselves, and the fact that we think we are following your will does not mean that we are actually doing so.
But we believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you.
And we hope we have that desire in all that we are doing.
We hope that we will never do anything apart from that desire.
And we know that if we do this you will lead us by the right road though we may know nothing about it.
Therefore will we trust you always though we may seem to be lost and in the shadow of death.
We will not fear, for you are ever with us, and you will never leave us to face our perils alone.
How much clarity do you have about the direction in which you are going?
Express your desire to please God and to know God’s pleasure.
Selecting a Souvenir
We trust in your presence to be with us always.
We trust in your pardon to forgive us when we go astray.
We trust in your promise to direct our paths.
You are our God. In God we trust.
Our God in heaven.
We will walk today seeking to be conscious of the resources that you supply.
We will walk today seeking to follow in the footsteps of Jesus.
We will walk today seeking to be open to the touch of your Holy Spirit.
Walk with us Creator, Saviour and Spirit.
Copyright © 2007 Geoff Pound Making Life Decisions
 Author unknown.
 Thomas Merton, Thoughts in Solitude (New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux, 1958), 83.