What season are YOU in?

10 January 2023
Sr. Cheryl Rose

Everything around us loudly announces we are in the season of Christmas, from the lights and poinsettias to the frigid winter snow and howling winds. But the fact is that many times, the official liturgical season is NOT the season of our own soul. While the Church calendar may be celebrating the coming of an infant, helpless and divine, who comes in the precious body of a newborn to bring our world out of darkness, you may find that your heart is not there in that scene. You can appreciate it, you can remember other years of matching the season, but this year you are not LIVING that season. Don’t be surprised if you can’t enter that crib and stable scene. Your soul may actually be in the Garden of Gethsemane, keeping silent vigil with the man Jesus who is facing a time of great suffering. THAT may be the mystery your soul is experiencing now. The calendar celebrates the cycle of great mysteries, but our soul is on its own path, with its own divine inner timing.

God, who guides our spiritual journey, has an itinerary uniquely fashioned for each soul, bringing us at just the right time to the sacred mysteries and lessons we are ready for. Perhaps sometimes we feel “out of” the season the church is in. We may be unable to experience personally the glory of resurrection when WE are living the flight into Egypt, or the long winter of Advent waiting for God’s presence to visit our darkness. It may bring some comfort or understanding to ask ourselves periodically what liturgical mystery we are personally living at this time. It may facilitate our spiritual growth to know what the lessons are we’re currently working with. We can better see what we need to accept, or co-operate with, and not be disappointed if we can’t muster up the sentiments of the liturgical season the world is celebrating. Yes, it’s Christmas, and we know what that is about. We’ve long meditated on this mystery. But some years---we are somewhere else on that sacred journey, living other mysteries of Jesus, the One we follow. As we walk our unique path, may we receive and honor the mysteries unfolding in our own soul, alert to the graces offered, trusting the Spirit’s wisdom. We can rejoice in whatever part of the liturgical cycle the community is celebrating, while other mysteries are stirring in our own hearts.