Hello my Friends, As a human being I have lived through some times that were very difficult for me. In those moments I have often been unable to understand why I had to endure such trials and I have felt as though I were alone in my despair and pain. My most frequent reactions to those thoughts and feelings were to sink into a desperate self pity or to lash out at the rest of the world, most especially those who were closest to me, in anger and rage. In my thirty or so years of recovery I have come to believe that I am not unique in my reaction to the tragic and senseless events of life. We all respond and react in much the same way to these things. I think that one reason that we do is because we have a belief that everything must happen for a reason, and that if we know the reason we will be okay with whatever happens. It was not until I came to understand that these beliefs were not necessarily true and that there were some things in this life that I would never be able to understand or feel my way around that I came to realize how much I needed a faith in a God who was much bigger than myself. In recovery, they refer to this as a bottom. I believe that these bottoms are necessary for all of us if we are to experience a true spiritual awakening. In moments when our reasoning ability and our emotional stability are most challenged, we are often unable to cope with life’s terms, and it is in those moments when we are most likely to cry out (often in anger and rage) to God. Our God may appear to have disappeared in these times, but these can be the most important moments of our spiritual life, if we open ourselves to them. This past week the tragic news of the brutal murder of Officer Ron Tarentino, the return of his body to town, his wake and funeral, has been one of those moments for many of us I am sure. I cannot give you the answers you want and maybe need, but I will share with you a prayer that has been a great comfort to me in my times of trial.
God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things that I can and the wisdom to know the difference.
In my most difficult times this prayer is always in my mind, and frequently on my lips, as I walk through my life. Try it, it might be of help to you. God Bless Officer Tarentino! God bless his family! And God bless all of you! Fr. Rob