|Mary, an adorable boating captain and philosopher|
Mary, my daughter, wanted to take me out in the row boat at my sister's cottage on Schisel's Lake in Manitowoc County. I was a bit hesitant, nervous that we might become entangled in the weeds that circle the edges of the lake. Mary looked at me with that smart look all twelve-year-old girls are capable of and simply said, "Mom! Trust God!" I reminded her that she is not God to which she retorted, "No, but I'm God's daughter, so trust me!" I did and we had a lovely time.
As Mary did the hard work of rowing, I shared my favorite passage from the book I am currently reading, Abandonment to Divine Providence by Jean-Pierre de Caussade, with her. When I finished reading, Mary, who had been listening very closely, chided me with, "See, Mom! That passage was meant for you. Trust God, that's all you have to do!" How simple she makes it seem, boiling down what in my eyes is a complex spiritual discipline, that is, trying to abandon myself to God's will, to the joy of relaxing on a boat ride on a small, rural lake. My daughter, the spiritual master!
"Fools that we are! We admire and bless this divine action in the writings relating its history, and when it is ready to continue this writing on our hearts, we keep moving the paper and prevent it writing by our curiosity, to see what it is doing in and around us. Pardon, Divine Love, these defects; I can see them all in myself, for I am not yet able to understand how to let You act. So far I have not allowed myself to be cast into the mould. I have run through all Your workshops and have admired all Your works, but have not, as yet,by abandonment, received even the bare outlines of Your pencil. Nevertheless I have found in You a kind Master, a Physician, a Father, a Beloved Friend.
I will now become Your disciple, and will frequent no other school than Yours. Like the prodigal son I return hungering for Your bread. I relinquish the ideas which tend only to the satisfaction of mental curiosity; I will no longer run after masters and books but will only make use of them as of other things that present themselves, not for my own satisfaction, but in dependence on the Divine action and in obedience to You. For love of You and to discharge my debts I will confine myself to the essential business, that of the present moment, and thus enable You to act."
~from Abandonment to Divine Providence
|Schisel's Lake from the cottage|
|Jack angling for a nibble|
|Mary and Jack|
|a view of the cottage from the boat|
|a wild onion|
|A wild dog? No! It's Marley, my sister's adorable dog.|
|I love Schisel's Lake!|