Waiting (for God)

Waiting, it seems to me, is a defining characteristic of the spiritual life. In my mid-twenties, I rediscovered God and eagerly adopted the opening verse of Psalm 63 as a recurring prayer.

“Oh God, you are my God whom I seek; for you my flesh pines and my soul thirsts like the earth, parched, lifeless and without water.”

These words gave/give authentic voice to an aching for God in my heart that has yet to be fully satisfied. Still today, in prayer or simply in quiet moments, I echo the Psalmist’s words, and I wait.

In my early fifties, I endured a prolonged and, frankly, demoralizing period of spiritual darkness. While in the midst, I repeatedly called out to God for even a pinpoint of light to sustain me, but all that came was this familiar ache.

On the other side of that wrenching experience, I shared the details with my spiritual director. In frustration, I asked him why God had withheld consolation for so long. In his wise way, he quietly asked: “Have you ever considered that the aching in your heart was your pinpoint of light?”

Since that exchange, I have come to view the ache as my companion on the journey. Now, we wait together.

9 thoughts on “Waiting (for God)

    1. sdalton43 Post author

      Indeed, Janet. This is just one example, but I think it demonstrates the value of spiritual direction. It has benefited me greatly. Blessings, dear friend! And, love to John!

  1. Sharon R Chace


    My response also applies to your posting around Thanksgiving time. Sometime around 1974, a psychiatrist who my husband consulted send him home with a message for me. In essence, “Life can be balanced over a lifetime, not just a day.” Seems like a similar idea to me as the Ignatian concept of desolation and consolation. So I do hope you have continual consolations in your present life after a time of dryness and finding your best job or your best job finding you. For me my books are a relatively late life achievement balancing out the years of being wife and mother without a great deal of help. Now at age 73, I am the new Poet Laureate of Rockport! You may share this if you wish. I just do better with e-mails than with response forms.

    Kind Regards, Sharon Sharon R. Chace MTS, WJST 98

    1. sdalton43 Post author

      Hi, Sharon! It’s always a blessing to hear from you. Congratulations on being recognized as the Poet Laureate of Rockport. That’s quite an honor – and well-deserved! I am very happy (i.e., consoled) in my new position, but, thanks to our mutual friend, Ignatius, I also know to expect times of desolation. Spiritual direction helps keep me in balance. Writing does as well, when I have the time. I hope you continue to draw inspiration for your noble work from our beautiful world. Blessings always, Steve


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