Pilgrimage Day 3
I’m under a time constraint to finish this post because I’ve only got 30 minutes of free WiFi at the JFK airport. After surviving a train and three subways to get here on time, the weather has caused significant delays and it looks like I’ll be hanging out right here until 1:25am. Conveniently, when I found this out I had just popped two Dramamine.
But I’m getting ahead of myself.
It was a GREAT final day at Our Lady of Grace. A steady rain fell throughout the morning and into the early afternoon and provided a peaceful backdrop for time in the chapel with the Lord. There is something so sweet and special about that place… I could go on for days about it but I will summarize by saying it is a glimpse into heaven. In fact I was ruminating on that idea earlier when I was still there. Because of the grille behind the altar, the nuns on the other side appear kind of “blurry” (or maybe that’s me not wearing my glasses again…) and the separation from them during the Divine Office is palpable. Maybe more so for me because one of my dearest friends sits just on the other side. It makes me think of how close heaven is yet how far away it can feel. “For now we see as in a mirror, dimly,” St. Paul writes. And seeing glimpses of the Kingdom always leaves the heart wanting more. It is both a sorrow and a grace — “Then,” he continues, “we shall see face to face.”
The title of this post comes from something one of my Sister colleagues said to me the other day: that God is never late. It was a good reminder that He had already written my story before I’d even lived a day (Psalm 139) and that He is entirely trustworthy. And as it turns out, my flight has been delayed by 2.5 hours (so far) and as I feel my impatience rise I am reminded — He’s never late.
As I rush to finish this so I can call my sister, I will say that my heart is filled with gratitude for all the graces of this pilgrimage so far…. For the hospitality and kindness of Steve, the volunteer driver who picked me up from the airport and took me to the train station and treated me with the concern and care of a dad; for the openness and love of the nuns; for the intriguing conversation with Eleanor, my fellow retreatant in the guest quarters; and for the hope of what lies in store on the remainder of this pilgrimage: thank you, Lord! All is grace.