A Lenten song has this beautiful refrain: “Turn to the living God, The God of healing and comfort; And with delight, God will turn to you.” We don’t need to wait for Lent, still weeks in the distance, to turn away from the sickness of spirit or the anguish of heart that mars our personal lives or the life of the community. But what does it mean to turn to the living God, and why would God greet our turning—once again, for the thousandth time—with delight? Maybe God is too respectful of our freedom—that wild and dangerous gift—to force us to be just, kind, and cheerful; building up rather than tearing down each other and this Earth, our home. Or God’s delight might mean that nothing we do—even our most stubborn, determined, cold-hearted turning away—can quench God’s reckless love and mercy for each and all of us.
By Mara Faulkner, OSB