is all around you as you struggle up the path. The only sound of life is the quiet, stony
crunch of your steps against the gravel beneath you.
The Way is rough and rocky under your feet. You are quick to stumble. The light is
fading to navy, to indigo, and soon it will be black. Hours, days, lifetimes seem to pass
by – and all you can see is dark, impenetrable slate on the sheer incline. You are
alone. The heights before you are steep and unyielding.
Will you ever reach the top? On this strange hill that seems to go on forever, never
making sense, will you ever get anywhere? Or will you always be climbing, never
getting any higher?
Suddenly, a path appears. It is quiet. Calm. A dirt path - winding up, around the
mountain, cutting through. It is not a short cut by any means, but it is a way around.
You do not hesitate to turn. Something about this way just feels right. Better.
The New Way is soft. Warmed by the sun. Passing by trees and through shadows
made by a growing light, what do you see? What do you taste? The darkness of the
forest? The dimness of a distant, unseen sun?
The New Way curves around the mountain, and it is farther to the peak than you
thought. From where you stand, you can see the top – it is glowing, in the sun. A rock
juts out into the expanse of endless sky. A place to stand. It is a place to lay in green
pastures, to walk beside quiet waters with a friend.
Eagerly, you begin to pick up speed. The rocks on the path are larger and they hit your
knees, scrape your ankles, but you don’t care. Your chilled skin is starting to warm.
The long-lost feeling is returning to your bones. Somewhere, something you forgot is
beginning to echo. A low, aching cry, reverberating in your lungs, pulsing through your
heart. The song of a place you once belonged.
The last few yards before the Summit are hard. Your heart rate is pounding like a drum
in your ears. It’s an almost vertical incline. But you can’t wait. Just when you think
your throat might collapse from need of air, you mount the rock and stand on your tired
legs, on your wary feet.
A wind from the mighty chasm before you blows onto your chest and nearly pushes you
over. The wonder, the power, the glory, has captured your soul.
On the Summit, the view is terrific. Not peaceful, but unending. Not soft and
comforting, but depthless. Wild. A canyon of deep reds, dark purples, palest yellow,
darkest green, plunges in and out shadow. The distant sun is setting before you, a
brilliant, blinding image of glory unrestrained.
It is now you know who you stand before.
The Ancient of Days.
The Lord God, Almighty.
His presence, his beauty, staggers your imagination.
Behind you, there is a man. He has a body, though his beauty seems to be beyond it.
Meeting his eye, you wonder how you ever believed that God was meek, that God was
tiny, that God knew nothing. For a moment, you remember that narrow cave you were
trapped in before , how cold it had been. Looking into his face you realize his sorrow,
his everlasting mercy, his knowledge of all.
You are unable to look into his face, knowing what you have done, how long it took you
to climb this mountain, to find him here. Why didn’t you simply ask him to help you, to
crash open the boulders and lift you to this place?
I don’t know what I’m capable of, you find yourself saying. But I hope I don’t disappoint
And the Lord replies, Yes.
Yes, my child.
You are always worth waiting for.
When you call me, I will come for you
And I will not
Copyright Curriculum Resources for Catholic Educators 2013