August 28, 2013

“You have made us for Yourself, and our hearts are restless until they rest in You.”  This famous line from the pen of Augustine resonates in the heart of everyone, maybe most especially in the heart of those of us in recovery.

Augustine led a dissolute life before his conversion to Christianity.  His life story in his “Confessions” bespeaks many of our own errant ways before getting into sobriety.  It was only through the insistent prayer of Augustine’s mother, Monica, that he received the grace to turn his life around.  How many of us had the same kind of mother who fretted over us, who expressed alarm at our waywardness and yet kept hope through prayer that we would “turn around.”  I credit my own mother, Lord rest her soul, who interceded mightily for me after her death.

Yet now we realize that God and His Spirit was with us all the time, even in our darkest days and nights.  We can now say, as Augustine did, “late have I loved You, O Beauty both so ancient and so new!  And behold You were with me all the time.”

Today we make our own the Psalm of David, Ps 139:

You have searched me and you know me, Lord

Where can I go from Your Spirit?

From Your presence where can I flee?

If I go up to the heavens, You are there;

If I sink to the nether world, You are present there.

If I take the wings of the dawn,

If I settle at the farthest limits of the sea,

Even there Your hand shall guide me,

And Your right hand hold me fast.

If I say, surely the darkness shall hide me,

And night shall be my light –

For You darkness itself is not dark,

And night shines as the day.

You have searched me and You know me, Lord.