I decided to go to confession this afternoon. Lately, I have felt very in need of this sacrament, but have been coming up with excuses not to go. Some of the same excuses I’ve been using to miss Mass. Altogether, lame excuses.
Deep down I knew what was ahead of me. Once I entered my Father’s house, my burdens, my mixed emotions, my anger, all would pour forth. It’s been a tumultuous few months assisting my stepson with his financial burdens, awaiting roofers and insurance checks, my diagnosis of menopause and my mother’s own journey.
And it happened. As I confessed to my priest, my tears began to flow. And flow. And flow. They would not stop. Now, one of the many reasons I chose to become a parishioner of Holy Savior was the priest. A gentle, intelligent, soulful man, he makes you want to be not just a better person, but a deeper Christian. So, I cried and babbled. He listened, then spoke. Eloquently. Kindly.
Then he picked up a book that was lying next to his chair. A book he said he didn’t know why he’d brought along to the confessional. He saw it passing through the office and just picked it up on his way out the door. It was a book of poetry by Carmelite nun, Jessica Powers. He then proceeded to read to me a poem about a sparrow struggling to take flight, fighting with all of her small might. When she finally stopped struggling and was weary, a breeze flowed down from the mountains and gently lifted her. She realized if she had just waited and flown with the wind, she would not have struggled so hard all alone.
When he finished, he looked at me and asked, “Do you understand?” Completely, was my answer. Then I said, “Father, I know why you brought that book along. I’m an English major. I love poetry and prose. How other than through a poem would God speak to me.” Father smiled broadly. “Yes, exactly.”
These are what I like to call hand-of-God moments. A moment that touched not only me, but the priest as well.
My soul is feeling better. I await the coming breeze.