Blog, God + Spirituality, Personal Growth + Wholeness

Patient Trust (In The Slow Work of God)

This poem has been an encouragement to me over the past few very difficult, but necessary years. I am only beginning to understand the depths of the words contained in this poem, words that both devastate me and comfort me all at the same time.

Patient Trust (In The Slow Work of God)

— By Pierre Teilhard de Chardin

Above all, trust in the slow work of God.
We are quite naturally impatient in everything
to reach the end without delay.
We should like to skip the intermediate stages.
We are impatient of being on the way to something
unknown, something new.
And yet it is the law of all progress
that it is made by passing through
some stages of instability—
and that it may take a very long time.

And so I think it is with you;
your ideas mature gradually—let them grow,
let them shape themselves, without undue haste.
Don’t try to force them on,
as though you could be today what time
(that is to say, grace and circumstances
acting on your own good will)
will make of you tomorrow.

Only God could say what this new spirit
gradually forming within you will be.
Give Our Lord the benefit of believing
that his hand is leading you,
and accept the anxiety of feeling yourself
in suspense and incomplete.

  • Brian Lam

    Yes, the ”slow work” He lets grow up in our shifting, often shaking soil: the bravery and the fear of being that ground, of being seeded with so many varied things, still variegating while they fall into you…I feel that biological movement of Him in me; and it is just as how you put it, Ali–a comforting yet devastating reality. Comforting and even exciting, in that it seems like a grand, mountainous adventure of my personality and the secrets I hold inside me; but also devastating, since it appears to demand my loyalty and my obedience to its own call of pushing growth, beyond the expectations of others around me, beyond their opinions and own faith in Him. A solitude-filled journey, yes, both in that bracing way one comes upon a cliffside panorama–but also in that way one breathes those high clear airs all on one’s own.

    • Yes, God’s “slow work”…. ah the bliss and the agony ;)

      Yes, comforting because it means He’s involved in this adventure…
      Yes, devastating because it really does demand a loyalty because it’s happening right in the core of me…

      Love that you comment on each post. Means so much :)

      Maybe this blog is a letter back and forth between sister and brother hehe.

    • Yes, it’s such a “slow work”… but the more I think about it… the more I realize it’s kind and loving to be slow. Can you imagine how crazy it would be if it happened all at once? We’d probably explode and implode eventually if life just went boom boom boom, voila!