Saturday, February 20, 2010


I have just returned from an all night and most of the day sleep study. Would that the world worked like that.  A 15 minute nap every two hrs in a light insulated, mostly sound insulated, temperature controlled room.
Napping with no guilt. That's a taste of heaven.

Friday, February 19, 2010


A blessed Lenten season to you all.
I would commend to you a couple of special posts.
The first is from MereComments,excerpts from the Canon of St. Andrew, prayed this last Tuesday evening during Orthodox Compline:

Sin has stripped me of the robe that God once wove for me, and it has sewed for me garments of skin.

I am clothed with a raiment of shame as with fig leaves, in condemnation of my self-willed passions.

I have fallen beneath the painful burden of the passions and the corruption of material things; and I am hard pressed by the enemy.

Instead of freedom from possessions, O Savior, I have pursued a life in love with material things and now I wear a heavy yoke.

I have adorned the idol of my flesh with a many-colored coat of shameful thought, and I am condemned.

I have care only for the outward adornment, and neglected that which is within—the tabernacle fashioned by God.

I have discolored with the passions the first beauty of the image, O Savior. But seek me, as once Thou hast sought the lost coin, and find me.

Though I have sinned, O Savior, yet I know that Thou art full of loving-kindness. Thou dost chastise with mercy and art fervent in compassion. Thou dost see me weeping and dost run to meet me, like the Father calling back the Prodigal Son.

The second is a quote from A Trail of Flowers. A Lenten meditation to take you through Easter if you so desire:

"...before setting to work for God and to fight against the devil, first calculate your forces; and if you consider yourself well enough equipped to begin, you are a fool, because the tower to be built costs an outrageous price, and the enemy coming out to meet you is an angel, before whom you are of no account. Get to know yourself so well that you cannot contemplate yourself without flinching. Then there will be room for hope. In the sure knowledge that you are obliged to do the impossible in Him who strengthens you, then you are ready for a task which can be performed only through the Cross."

--Jacques Maritain, as quoted by Father Gerald Vann, O.P. in The Seven Swords

God Things

I had a doctor appointment yesterday. I was running behind since I was enjoying some super tacos at my favorite taco joint that was just down the street. My appointment was for 12:00 and I made it with 5 minutes to spare. Unfortunately I had to visit the sand box upon arrival so in order to let the doctor know that I was there I put my cap (I was in uniform as usual) on the couch in a prominent spot and went down the hall. This doctors office is rather small and the receptionist is only part time so there was no one to tell that I had arrived except the  doctor and the one other patient in the waiting room.
When I returned, the other patient had disappeared, presumably into one of the other doctors offices. The door to my doctor's office was closed, so I settled down to a browse the stack of magazines, content that I had made it on time or at least had caused no problem in the schedule.
Time ticked by. It was now 20 minutes past my appointment time. I began to doubt that I was there on the right day and/or the right time. I called my wife, keeper of the schedule of schedules, and asked her to check the e-mail to confirm the day and time. Yes, she informed me, the reminder was for February 18th at 12:00.
So far so good.
More time passed.
I took a nap. Which is standard operating procedure anytime I stay still for more than a few minutes. 10 minutes later I looked at the clock. 12:45.
I suppose I could have gotten upset but I did not. I was in no hurry to return to work and my full of tacos tummy was sending out signals of contentment and patience that Job would have been proud of.
At 2:00 the door opened and out came my doctor with a patient leading the way. The doctor greeted me pleasantly and I returned the greeting. My doubts and confusion at the situation continued.
My appointment was today, right? I asked.
Yes, she replied.
At noon, right, I queried.
No, I don't think so, she said. Let me check. She looked at her desk calendar and began to apologize. My appointment was indeed for 12:00. She had thought it was 1:00. The patient before me had come in a state of crisis and the doctor "gave up her lunch," to assist thinking my appointment was an hour later.

And I marveled at God's timing. The extra time spent at lunch in good company and good food. The last minute arrival for the appointment the dash to the facilities. If not for these, the doctor would have been reminded that my appointment was at noon and even if I had encouraged her to switch appointments, would never have been able to give her full attention knowing I was outside waiting.

I had no crisis. This was the last appointment in a series of follow ups. A mere formality.
I was in no rush. It was God's perfect timing. A God thing.

In this time of Lenten sacrifice, may we all have the patience to let God use us for his purposes and occasionally glimpse the results