The last few years have taught me that there really is nothing as important at the next step. Whatever grand plans I might have, the next step is the only one that really matters. When goals are not so clear and the outcome of a particular journey ill-defined, it becomes even more true.
This year, in particular, I have been living in a fog. That great quote from Thomas Merton has been more real to me than I care to admit.
My Lord God I have no idea where I am going. I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it will end. Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so.
I really am living in blind faith at the moment. I don’t know where my current trajectory is leading. The path is entirely clouded. But when I still and when I allow myself to use the greatest honesty that I can muster in the moment, the next step does emerge.
It offers no greater clarity than the foot-fall I left behind, but something in me assents.
As I journey further along this path, there is one significant reassurance – in the last six months I have had the joy of reconciling three old relationships. One with someone who inadvertently caused me great harm; one a relationship which had ended awkwardly; and the third a friend from childhood whom I wounded badly.
Many years ago a wise spiritual director once suggested that the old gospel saying is worth heeding – by their fruit you shall know them. I am hoping that his wisdom holds here! I trust that these reconciliations are good fruit.