The Resurrection of Spring

My friend Gerry just sent me the following quote by Dorothy Day.  And, although you certainly can’t tell it is spring by looking at the snow I see out of my study window, I thought I’d share it:

“It is surely an exercise of faith for us to see Christ in each other. But it is through such exercise that we grow and the joy of our vocation assures us we are on the right path. Certainly, it is easier to believe now that the sun warms us, and we know that buds will appear on the trees in the wasteland across the street, that life will spring out of the dull clods of that littered park across the way.

“There are wars and rumors of war, poverty and plague, hunger and pain. Still, the sap is rising, again there is the resurrection of spring, and God’s continuing promise to us that He is with us always, with His comfort and joy, if we will only ask.

The Challenge of Living by Pure Faith

I mentioned in a post last week that I’m currently reading Mother Teresa’s book, Come Be My Light.  Early in the description of her long period of interior darkness, it is observed that Teresa “sacrificed willingly the consolation of felt union with Jesus for the challenge of living by pure faith.” 

I’m struck as I write the line here as I was when I read it.  As I reflect on the joy of the peak religious experiences of my life, my greatest moments of affective union with God, I wonder: could I as willingly as Teresa accept the absence of those experiences? 

It is true that it is not in our control whether we experience consolation or darkness.  But it is hard not to prefer the first over the second.  I wonder how many of us who have experienced the exquisite consolation of felt union with Jesus would willingly sacrifice that for the challenge of living by pure faith?  At least right now I can’t honestly say that I would. (Oh sure, I could willingly accept a short period of darkness here or there…but years…no.)  At least right now, I don’t think I can do better than to say I that I desire and pray for the ability to willingly sacrifice consolation for the challenge of living by pure faith.  And that is good enough for now.