Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Arc of Providence...

As long as I can remember, I have believed in a Higher Power of a sort.

Thankfully, belief in the Unseen comes quite easy for me.

This has at times been a source of much misery and hardship in my life, given my expansive and oft used powers of embellishment and delusion.

Other times, and I count the present time among these, it has been the greatest source of comfort and stability in my life. 

If I let it in

In the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous, we are counseled as follows:
The great fact is just this, and nothing less: That we have had deep and effective spiritual experiences which have revolutionized our whole attitude toward life, toward our fellows and toward God's universe. The central fact of our lives today is the absolute certainty that our Creator has entered into our hearts and lives in a way which is indeed miraculous. He has commenced to accomplish those things for us which we could never do by ourselves.
Only recently have I realized that my spiritual experience, my burning bush is not an event, but rather an ongoing process. It is not a singular happening or a discrete encounter in which the clouds opened, sunlight rained down and choirs of angels sang.

It is a relationship.

What it has been is a continuous presence of small yet powerful impressions, thoughts, happenings, coincidences,  encounters with people, books, TV shows, songs lyrics that have been there at exactly the right place at exactly the right time to give me exactly the help I need to deal with  exactly what I am dealing with at that exact moment.


Rare were the times in which I was open enough, honest enough and willing enough to see these.

Most times I was to self-involved, self-seeking and self-serving to realize when it was happening right in front of me.

One of the powers of Time and Space is that it gives us the ability us to look back in our lives and analyze what ACTUALLY happened, not what we THINK happened.

When I read the aforementioned quote, I always take hold the last sentence in the highest esteem:
He has commenced to accomplish those things for us which we could never do by ourselves.
The vast majority of my adult life has been spent in jails, institutions or on the streets. I had nowhere to sleep, no job to go to and no money with which to acquire the basics: food, clothing, shelter and so forth.

Given this, I have always been amazed at my ability to provide for myself as  I have ALWAYS had these things when I needed them.

Whether it was squatting in an abandoned house or sleeping in a unoccupied dorm room on a random college campus or stumbling across a backpack on a beach that held a box of granola bars and a pair of shoes that fit me just right, I have ALWAYS been provided for.

I was very proud of my ability to live by my wits.


Well, now I look back upon this unbroken line of perfect abundance, this Arc of Providence and know that it was not in any way, shape or form due to anything I did or did not due.

It was God, acting in small, unseen and often unacknowledged ways that allowed me to go where I needed to go, do what I needed to do.

It was God that fed me.

It was God that sheltered me.

It was God that sustained me.

In jails, in dorms, on beaches and in several rare instances, my own dwelling.

I was simply the lucky and undeserving recipient of this Arc of Providence.

Armed with this evidence, with the knowledge that my needs of food, shelter, clothing and other essentials have always been provided for and by logic will continue to be provided for, I move forward.

At this point in my life where I find myself, this terrifying and wondrous point, I ask that God grant me knowledge of His will for me and the carry it out.

Be well, do good work and keep in touch.

1 comment:

  1. See email I just sent - we crossed in cyber space! Another sure sign that the Arc of Providence (which I may steal for a poem inspiration) is truly at the center of our existence... "Be sober-minded and alert, for your adversary, the devil, lurks about seeking someone/something to devour." May he starve in your midst as you continue to feast on the goodness and gladness that the Lord has in you, His Beloved.