After the earthquake in Haiti, I was part of an online community that grew in support of those who lost loved ones in the Hotel Montana. This Facebook page not only posted information, but it also provided connection. Every day I would visit to see if friends and family had been found, and later, to see if their bodies had been recovered. As the days turned into weeks, a sense of solidarity grew among the members of the site, a commitment to stay until the last body had been brought home. Finally, the wait was down to one, and post after post repeated this phrase - come home, captain, come home.  We're not leaving until everyone comes home.

The writer of Hebrews talks about faith in a passage that is well-known to many - the "Hall of Faith" in chapter 11. After listing many 'greats' of the Jewish faith, he ends with this statement: These were all commended for their faith, yet none of them received what had been promised. God had planned something better for us so that only together with us would they be made perfect.

As I've been pondering the many faces of patience, I've been reflecting on the role of patience in community. A patience that will not move on until others are ready and able. Frederick Buechner in his book "The Sacred Journey" tells the story of receiving his first book contract. Full of this good news, he was heading down the stairs, when he ran into an old acquaintance whom he knew was out of work and down on his luck. He was profoundly moved, and questioned himself if he had a right to be happy when this man was so obviously unhappy.

I've pondered that moment for a while. I'm a firm believer in pursuing joy for myself; I believe that with all that is in my power, I should seek to make a meaningful life, to fulfill my vocation and to enjoy the many good gifts that surround me. But the seeking of joy for myself will not bring about the life that is truly good. The truly good life participates in the life of God, and His life encompasses all of creation. This will require patience on my part, and perseverance. Patience in not rushing ahead, and perseverance in doing my best to make sure others can join me in this life.
dorea
6/21/2010 06:38:03 am

you write so clearly, so right to the point and fresh. what you said about taking part in God's life- yes! that's it! and it hit me anew today. just what i needed to hear to get out of my head and focused on Him and the bigger than me picture. how beautiful to live a life that's bigger than me. if i can just pop my head above the clouds to see.
thank you for your truths.

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