That “taste of snow” last week turned into a whopper—6 inches! A week later, despite a few days in the mid-fifties, there was still snow on the ground, at least in the shade and on the north side of homes and hillsides. Then fog rolled in last Friday…another very unusual event for New Mexico. Amazing, thick, pea-soup fog, the likes of which I don’t remember seeing since I lived in New England! I spent another day distracted from the computer, and in awe of creation’s amazing variety….
Fog obscures our view, and changes our perspective. Mountains that normally feel close by are slowly shrouded by layers of mist until they disappear completely, helping us recognize that they’re much further away than they appeared. Things that we “know” are out there, we can no longer see—and can sometimes forget.
I’m editing a fascinating book about an abbess in early-seventeenth-century France, and am finding much to ponder in her niece-and-biographer’s contemplative interpretations on the events in this abbess’s life. She talks about how we sometimes appear to lose our way, to lose touch with God’s guidance, or voice. She wonders whether this is, in fact, part of the nature of God’s plan for us—that there are lessons we won’t learn without the experience of losing our way in a fog of one sort or another.
In the case of the abbess, her biographer believed that the agendas of those “in the world,” outside of the abbey’s walls, for a time came to overwhelm the voice of God within this abbess’s life. It’s as if a worldly fog enveloped the abbey, preventing the abbess from seeing the God who was there all the time. Only when the fog had lifted was she able to see again with clarity, and shape her life—and that of the abbey—appropriately.
Has this happened in your life? Have you lost your way in a fog of one sort or another? What did you lose sight of in that time? What did you learn in that process?
Are you perhaps lost in the fog now? If so, remember that God is there, even if you no longer see, or sense, that divine presence. We are never alone, but sometimes our sight is obscured for a time. Hunker down, as if you were a tree in winter. Focus on tending your roots, and waiting with patience. Spring winds will come, and blow that fog away….