I wonder…how often do I miss moments of Grace in my life. Anne Lamott, in her book, “Small Victories”, says, “Sometimes grace is a ribbon of mountain air that gets in through the cracks.”
Now, I really don’t know what that means as I’ve never been on a snowy mountain top in the cold, inside a small, heated, wood cabin. But I have been in my life – my small, narrow life, in which is sometimes akin to being surrounded by deep cold with only the tiny flame of faith to warm my toes. And I still wonder where Grace slips in and do I miss it when it does?
I’m more likely to know where Grace isn’t than where or when it is. Or, maybe, I have the wrong idea of Grace – just what it is and is not. If only I knew for sure. But maybe, that’s also a part of Grace – the not knowing for sure.
Case in point: God has blessed me (or sometimes it feels like cursed me) with four-legged and winged creatures to look after. I moved into my mother’s home with 4 cats – a super mellow male, an ancient old mancat, feisty young female, and an anxiety-riddled middle-aged female who could really use a dose of valium or xanax to help her get through her day. I also had 3 female finches. Mom had 2 male and 3 female finches, an ancient hound dog and an old mancat who is the last of 3 brothers and is supremely angry about his only-cat-world being turned upside down. Life moves on and so do God’s creatures. There are now only a finch pair (we think they’re brother and sister – but if they mate I don’t think it will seriously screw up the world’s finch gene pool) and I adopted a 10-year old corgi-chi mix who is extremely well behaved for 99% of the time.
Taking care of these needy animals is sometimes rewarding, but if I’m honest, a huge pain in the a** a lot of the time. Litter boxes, throw up, poop in the yard, bird doo in the water dish, is it feeding time again? …
I just had to stop and break up yet another fight between mom’s old mancat Moose and one of my girls. He has discovered he can’t intimidate the mellow Toby and ancient Simon (who doesn’t count as a rival), but, boy, does he go after the Sue’s (BobbieSue and PeggySue). At any given moment when they are walking past his door he’ll go after them. The fights are mostly noise with no injuries so far. (Calming collars and a baby gate are forthcoming to keep them calm and separate.)
Anyway, I’ve digressed from my topic of Grace. Where is the Grace of God in all this madness? Most days if it’s there (and I’m sure it is) I don’t see it. It just passes me by like a thought too fleeting for my poor, self-pitying brain. I’m only going on faith here – and in the experience of others on the path who are way ahead of me and have left small altars along the way for me to stop and meditate on their path. But I ultimately have to climb back on to my path and start moving again.
So my prayer for today, ‘God, I believe in Your Grace. I sure as heck don’t understand it, don’t feel it most of the time, and am too self-absorbed to notice. Please open the eyes of my eyes, the ears of my ears, and most importantly, the heart of my heart, that I may see, hear and feel/know Your Grace when it happens.’
‘And thank You for the blessing/curse of Your precious creatures to look after. I guess if You had not trusted me to care for them in my feeble, decidedly graceless way, You would not have gifted them to me. Help me to find Your Grace in their care.’