“I Want to See.”
By Blind Beggar Bart

God Loves You!

Dear Bart,
My sense of hope was taken away by the cruelty of this world. I just want to be able to come to the point that I can say 'I am ok'. – “Feeling Hopeless,” 3/14/2014.

Dear “Feeling Hopeless,”
It is sad indeed to encounter disappointments in this world, which could be cruel sometimes for us who do our best to make it a happy one not only for ourselves but especially for others. This is further described in one of my first articles, “Our Uncontrollable Lives” (4/11/2010). I would think you have not totally lost hope because you still desire to “come to a point that you could say ‘I am ok.’” Maybe one way to achieve this is to talk with people from whom you have received genuine concern in the past. I’m sure the simple gesture of offering their shoulder while you express your woes to them could bring some light into your dark moments. It is to these simple acts of kindness you receive from them, or even from strangers, that you should focus your attention to lift your spirits. Another way is to engage in things that you enjoy. You can turn these disappointments into opportunities to re-focus on other things that bring you joy. If there are people who or situations that have brought you disappointments, there are more people who and things you could do that bring you hope. Count your blessings!

For me, disappointments are opportunities to re-focus on God: What is God telling me in this situation? Have I been ignoring Him for so long that my current situation now reminds me to look for His guidance? Have I been doing His will? Last week’s gospel (3/16/2014) was the transfiguration narrative. I have often heard the explanation that the 3 apostles were allowed to experience such a heavenly vision to give them hope for the glory in following Jesus and strength to withstand their trials ahead. But after listening to a priest’s talk in a conference, that narrative gave another dimension. The apostles were aware of their sinful and lowly lives before they were called and of their ignorance of Jesus’ ministry – several times in the gospels, the disciples have been described to misunderstand Jesus’ statements and there were instances where Jesus had to explain to them the meaning of his parables. This Sunday’s gospel (3/23/2014, Jn 4:5-42) describes one of these incidents. But upon hearing God’s voice saying “this is my beloved Son, with whom I well pleased” (Mt 17:5), the apostles must have been ecstatic with God’s affirmation of their master and of them as his disciples! To them it must have been equivalent to God telling them “You are my son’s beloved disciples, with whom I am well pleased” despite their shortcomings!

When we seek God, our Father, I am sure we will hear Him lovingly say: You are my son/daughter with whom I am well pleased… I love you as you are. It is the same message in the parable of the prodigal son. He goes even further: even when you feel no one is around to offer a shoulder to cry on, even when there is nothing you could do to lift your spirits, He will never abandon you, as it is written: “Can a mother forget her infant, be without tenderness for the child of her womb? Even should she forget, I will never forget you. See, upon the palms of my hands I have engraved you; your walls are ever before me” (Is 49:15-16).

If you would like to email me and hopefully find my response in this column, please send it to admin@cafepearsall.com (for now) addressed to me, or go to Contact Us of this website. Links to previous articles are found below. –BBB, 3/16/2014.

Previous articles:
No one Is, So Why Be Perfect? (3/2/2014)
Mature Love, (2/5/2014)
Let It Be Done According to Your Word: The Vanity of the Plans We Make (12/9/2013)
Our Uncontrollable Lives (4/11/2010)