It means a lot to me.

3 years ago yesterday, I got a phone call from a summer missionary program I had been dying to get into saying that I wasn't accepted.

The day before the associate pastor at my parish told our little bible study group he was being moved a year early. I remember sitting in my car afterwards and letting out more than my fair share of tears because he had been instrumental in my journey with the Lord and I was going to really miss him.

I remember I had been kind of sick, was suffering from a little spat with my good friend depression, and was generally not in a good place.

I was a little (a lot) upset with the Lord, and was kind of (very) frustrated over the fact that I had to show up for my 6pm holy hour that day. I rolled into the parking lot of St. Joe's and meandered into the chapel reluctantly.

Though I don't remember exactly what my prayer looked like, I probably rattled off a litany of complaints at the Lord, waiting for Him to come down from heaven and reassure me, saying "Oh, you're right, Naomi, I was all wrong!" And fix all those things He had put into play.

But He didn't. So, I flipped open my Magnificat and read the readings for that day because I hadn't been able to get to mass that morning. The first reading was this passage from Isaiah 49:

Thus says the LORD:
In a time of favor I answer you,
on the day of salvation I help you;
and I have kept you and given you as a covenant to the people,
To restore the land
and allot the desolate heritages,
Saying to the prisoners: Come out!
To those in darkness: Show yourselves!
Along the ways they shall find pasture,
on every bare height shall their pastures be.
They shall not hunger or thirst,
nor shall the scorching wind or the sun strike them;
For he who pities them leads them
and guides them beside springs of water.
I will cut a road through all my mountains,
and make my highways level.
See, some shall come from afar,
others from the north and the west,
and some from the land of Syene.
Sing out, O heavens, and rejoice, O earth,
break forth into song, you mountains.
For the LORD comforts his people
and shows mercy to his afflicted.

But Zion said, “The LORD has forsaken me;
my Lord has forgotten me.”
Can a mother forget her infant,
be without tenderness for the child of her womb?
Even should she forget,
I will never forget you.

I think I cried (I'm pretty sure I did). I was feeling forgotten and the Father, as He usually does, came down, sat right next to me in that little chapel, and said "Hey, I'm never gonna forget you. I promise."

The next line after "I will never forget you" is "See, upon the palms of my hands I have engraved you."

And that was His promise to me.

He didn't forget me. I got a way better (for me) summer job at a camp that changed me and helped me to grow so much, and prepared me to be a missionary for the next two years. That priest and I are still close, and I see him regularly at my job.

And the sun started shining on me. It is shining on me. 

So, today, during mass, when that reading was read, I smiled as all of that came back to me and how I saw the Father's providence in my life. He hasn't forgotten about me, and He never will.


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