Feast of Saint James, Apostle

I recall a dark period of my life, when I sought to serve God yet felt that I was failing.  A priest pointed me to today’s psalm that promises, “Those who sow in tears shall reap rejoicing.” He said that he had found this true at a certain point in his life, when he was facing certain sadness and confusion.  At the time, it was almost impossible for me to imagine how I would “reap rejoicing.”  Yet some time later I came across the same psalm and realized that I too could affirm its truth.

St. Ignatius has wise words for anyone who is in spiritual desolation, a state of decreased faith, hope, and love.  He urges a desolate person to call to mind what will come again: consolation.  That is to say, the person will once again experience a state of increased faith, hope, and love.  In effect, St. Ignatius is saying that those who “sow in tears shall reap rejoicing.”  This is a hopeful teaching that can make a huge difference.  It can help us stay faithful to God in times of desolation.  Are you, or someone you know, experiencing any desolation?  What would it look like to trust that you or they will “reap rejoicing”?

July 25th, 2014