Monday, October 02, 2006

One day at a time

Every morning I listen to the news on the radio. At night, before I go to sleep, I listen to the news. Then, next morning, once again, I listen to the news.

One thing I notice is that there is really little difference between the news bulletin last thing at night and the one that follows it early in the morning. Really, it’s not surprising. Only a few hours have passed between the two bulletins. However, sometimes I half-expect the world to have changed during those few hours when I was asleep. Of course, sometimes there is a major change. There might be a serious earthquake or a plane crash during the night that is so important that it becomes the first item on the news.

For the most part, however, the political negotiations, which are taking place in one part of the world or another, are more or less at the same stage today as they were yesterday. The financial crisis in which one country or another finds itself will be the same tomorrow as it is today.

It would be wonderful if, overnight, whilst the rest of the world was sleeping, two countries, which had been at war, could announce peace. Imagine the effect if, overnight, a country could suddenly find all its economic problems solved. What would it be like if, at night, someone who went to bed hungry, cold and unemployed, could wake up and find himself or herself well-fed, warm and employed? We’d look on the event as something miraculous.

However, life is not like that. I know from my own experience that the problems I take with me to bed are usually still with me when I wake up in the morning. Often they are not solved by the end of the day. There have been so many times when I would have loved to snap my fingers and suddenly find all my difficulties at an end…..but life is not like that.

There is a children’s film about a special teacher by the name of ‘Mary Poppins’. One day Mary wants to help her two pupils to pack their cases to go away on holiday. She clicks her fingers and suddenly, all the children’s clothes and toys find their own way into the suitcases. Within the space of seconds, the suitcases are packed and Mary Poppins and the children are ready to go away on holiday.

That sort of thing does not happen in my life. If I plan to do a job, the job takes time to be planned and to be put into effect. Results do not come instantaneously. Yet it is not always easy to take life one day at a time. I can be impatient for results. I can be impatient for success. I can be impatient for my difficulties to come to an end.

An Indian writer by the name of Tagore wrote that when God created flowers, he made them to open slowly and gently. If a flower opens too quickly, it is destroyed. If we do not take our life one day at a time, we might miss out on the most important lesson that God might want to teach us that day.

Lord, help me to take one day at a time. You know I am only human, but sometimes my human limitations are also frustrating. I’d like to work a few miracles, but then that would make me equal to you. I prefer you to be God and for me to be me. Help me to be patient, Lord. Help me to take one day at a time.

God bless,
Sr. Janet