HAVE NO ANXIETY. Frederick Buechner’s beautiful reflection on Paul’s encouragement made me smile today. I read it last time in the drawing room at Bishop’s House on Iona, on our parish pilgrimage there last May, looking out across the water to the Isle of Mull. I remember being very aware that it was easy, there, to be anxiety-free.

Rejoice. The Lord is at hand. Have no anxiety. Pray.

These words that God speaks to us in our own lives are the real miracles. They are not the miracles that create faith as we might think that a message written in the stars would create faith, but they are miracles that it takes faith to see – faith in the sense of openness, faith in the sense of willingness to wait, to watch, to listen for the incredible presence of God here in the world among us.

Frederick Buechner – Secrets in the Dark, page 21

But we’re very forgetful. We need frequent reminders to trust. I love that little phrase in the Lord’s Prayer at Mass in the English Roman Catholic rite “… and keep us free from all anxiety until …” – I must remember to use it as an option next time we reprint our own Eucharistic order. A daily or weekly reminder would do us all a world of good.

Freedom from anxiety. Last May on Iona. Today in balmy Fuerteventura. Will I remember that the peaceful “island of the soul” can be returned to wherever and whenever necessary, 24/7? And if I remember will I return every day to watch, with Frederick Buechner, and a whole glad company, for the “incredible presence of God here in the world among us” ?

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Fuerteventura, Spain

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