Words of Hope: Back to Basics

When I feel the deep ache of loss and start feeling sad about Dad being gone, I go back to the fundamentals. I go back to the basics; Dad taught: solitude and gratitude. I discipline myself to get alone and to begin to thank the Lord. I come with weight, my shoulders bent, my heart so heavy I can barely reach my solitary spot. Sometimes I crawl to my place of solitude, each movement a burden, an effort like a man looking for water in the desert. I begin to thank the Lord, bless Him, rejoice, and sing if I can. Sooner than I remember, the burden is lifted, and the flood of healing comes, washing away the suffering with hope and joy. I head for my closet or an empty room, drop on my knees alone, and start to praise the Lord. God resides in praise. Thomas Merton writes, “Inner silence deepens on continual seeking, a continual crying in the night… A silence in which He is no longer sought ceases to speak to us of Him. For He is found when He is sought and when He is no longer sought, He escapes us.” Dad believed in the fundaments. Seek first God’s kingdom. He believed this was a road for each person, a back-to-basics practice for living with joy and hope in difficult times. 

“But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well.” – Matthew 6:33