Thy Will Be Done


Here's a beautiful reflection on faith and life through tragedy by Robbins Milbank. It speaks to me and to many, and is worth taking a moment in the middle of a crazy day to remember:

I believe it is very easy to build God in your own image and very hard to rebuild Him when you crumble. I was born to see and experience the love of God. I saw Him in my father, whose kindness and wisdom led me through a thousand anguishes of youth. I saw Him in my wife–especially in her. I told my father about her when I was nine years old. “We’re going to marry,” I said.

He smiled. “I’m glad you feel like telling me. I hope you’ll always want to tell me things like this.”

For many years I was rich, seeing and loving and touching these children of God. I knew what I believed, because I believed in them and they in me.

They died. First my father. Then my wife.

Why do I still arrange my desk-work in neat piles? Why do I straighten a piece of furniture? Why do I try to arrive at appointments a minute early? Why do I lie down to sleep or get up in the morning? Have you ever wandered through an empty house looking for a purpose? You do a lot of little things automatically.

I’d like to talk about my house. It talks to me quietly in the night of the love it still shares, of the garden that still surrounds it, of the laughter of our children and grandchildren and our pride in them. I lie on my bed pulling words around, trying to understand their meaning. Words like “I believe.”

This is know: I believe in the Lord’s Prayer, all of it, but particularly where it says, “Thy will be done.” For me, that’s one clear channel to God. That one belief, “Thy will be done,” carries me through each act of each day.