Last Friday, the pettiest things were driving me nuts at work -- down to the smoke-raspy, nasal-accented, New York tones of some coworkers' voices. I know part of the problem was that I hadn't worked out at all last week, but I was just fed up. Fed up with being where I am, and where I work, and how nothing seems to be changing even though I feel like I'm ready for it to, how I want to move somewhere vibrant with a good Catholic community (one that isn't geared toward retirees) and work in a job that allows me the opportunity to use the creative talents I sometimes feel are going to waste here.
During my lunch break, I'd finally had enough. I got up and drove to the nearest church, San Pedro, and went to the chapel to pray. But it wasn't just prayer...God knows what I want and need, and I figured He didn't need to hear it again (I did briefly remind Him...although I'm sure The Almighty is fairly sick of my whining). Alternately, I knelt and sat in front of the tabernacle, soaking up the peace and cool of the place, basking in the Presence of Jesus. After half an hour, I felt like I'd had a massage. The knots in my shoulders were gone, and I was peaceful again. God is so good.
And then something hit me. Almost exactly five years earlier (to the month, at least), I had knelt in the same church praying that, if it was God's will, I would get the job I'd just interviewed for, the job I currently hold. The irony of the fact that I'd just been praying to leave a job and an area I'd prayed to join five years before didn't escape me. In fact, it made me laugh.
This isn't the first time I've noticed the Lord's sense of irony (the time when a former crush (who I believed deep down wasn't meant to me a priest, and, therefore, was meant to marry me) went off to seminary, then left and proceeded to ask me for girl advice springs to mind), and it likely won't be the last.
God and His sense of humor.
In 2005, I was out of work and living with my parents. Having lived with my family or roommates all my life, I'd never had an apartment all to myself. While I wasn't exactly desperate, I felt so boxed in. Now, having recently had a taste of how wonderfully active the Catholic YA community in Washington D.C. (after having gone with my cousin and a group from D.C. to Rome in November and visited for Holy Week and Easter), with the addition of being really tired of coming home to an empty (even of pets, since my landlord doesn't allow them) apartment and not feeling like I can progress any farther in my current job, I feel like I'm stagnating.
Not that these five years have been a waste. I am more dedicated in my prayer life and spiritual reading. I've come to rely on God more fully than ever before. And while I still cling too tightly to some things, I've been able to let go of others -- bad habits, family situations that are beyond my control -- that I used to let plague me. I'm far from perfect, but I'm working on it. It could have been my free will and impatience that brought me here five years ago, God let me come here now for a reason.
My half hour in the San Pedro chapel was a reminder of how I am loved and cared for. I have offered my hopes and wants for the future up to God, and I trust that He will continue to guide toward the places and people I need. I might get antsy again waiting, but He will always be there to ease me off the ledge.