From my Sunday journal entry:
I was helping my Mom out of the car so she could take hold of her walker and cross the street to head with me into the church for the 4:00 p.m. Vigil Mass. The sidewalk was uneven and tricky. It was hot, and she was feeling weak.
It was Ascension Day.
A kind friend caught sight of us and quickly came over to help complete this process. She was so gracious and gentle with my Mom. As the woman left us, Mom stopped walking and said to me, “I think she was an angel.”
As we got into our pew, Mom looked at me and whispered, “God planned that one.”
For whatever reason, that one sentence struck me like lightning. I thought: she summed up in a single phrase, drawn from reality, the entire mystery of faith, the whole purpose of creation and redemption. As I knelt down next to her to pray, I murmured in a low voice, “The whole thing is just so bloody simple. What I spend millions of words trying to say, she said. She was.”
During the Offertory, I thought: Jesus ascended into Heaven and hurled down the Spirit on earth to Mass-proliferate Heaven’s kindness and beauty on earth. Humble acts of great love are the real acts of the apostles. The whole work of God over the 14.5 billion year history of our universe — His “plan” — conspired toward that single encounter outside my car.
In each of such seemingly insignificant moments, opportunities which populate every person’s day, there is present in sign-language the whole of our humanity, the whole of eternity, and the holy, holy, holy of God.
And if it’s true that true wisdom is innocence regained on the far side of experience, which I believe it is, my Mom is supremely wise.
For we are his workmanship [poiēma], created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. — Ephesians 2:10