It had been a rough day. Everything that happened had been out of my control, which somehow made it worse. From bad news which was actually good, to uncertainty, to a messed-up printing order to uncomfortable lunch, it just kept going downhill.
I had time to kill, so I went to the one place I thought would bring me peace: the Church. It was a bit like coming home - every Monday during senior year, the whole high school gathered here for morning Mass. Here, I sang in choir and served as a back-up lector. From here I was sent forth after graduating.
As I sit, I realized that it has been exactly 3 years since high school graduation. Three years ago, at this time, I was donning a cap and gown, preparing to set out on a grand adventure. So really, it's appropriate that I find myself here right now.
I resist the desire to lay down and bury my face in the well-tred carpet as I would have at school, and instead sit to the side of the altar and bury my face in my hands.
"Why are there others here? I just want peace..."
But I find that, with those housewives and businessmen and couples sprinkled thru the Church around me, I gain a greater gift: the realization of the universal Church, found in these people I've never met, also saying prayers with me in this cold, cavernous space.
And somehow, though peace still escapes the depths of my heart, a touch of light reaches my soul.
As I turn to leave, I allow myself to remember three years back, to when I thought I'd seen it all. How much more true that is now, and how much longer on this road I have yet to travel.