God Plays

Sometimes we say things without thinking–perhaps even in jest–that turn out to be truer than anything we could have consciously come up with.

Some time ago Judy followed the slight tug of a half-formed impulse, stoped her car in front of the house of a casual friend of hers, walked to the stoop and rang the doorbell. Her friend had been ill and upset and was feeling desperate for some encouragement. Things with her family weren’t well. After she poured out her story, she asked plaintively, "Where is God in all this?" Before catching herself, Judy said, "Here I am!"

An untitled sonnet by Gerard Manley Hopkins ends with these lines:

Christ plays in ten thousand places,
Lovely in limbs, and lovely in eyes not his
To the Father through the features of men’s faces.

How mysterious, how wonderful that Christ plays in ten thousand places, that Christ plays in us.Children Face Painting

Benedictine spirituality also teaches us to contemplate Christ’s presence in all of us, and especially the hungry, the lonely, the imprisoned.

Perhaps more difficult, is to contemplate the presence of Christ in your relatives, co-workers, neighbours. Or maybe most difficult, in you.

The reality, wether sensed or not, is that even now, in some place, in a thousand places, God is present, happening, entering a conversation, joining an event, moved by a touch, delighted by a greeting, at play in people eating and drinking together.

As some poets say, In God we live, and move, and have our being.

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1 Comment

  1. ahhh
    the God of dappled things and wonderfully odd poets

    another fine piece you’ve blessed us with Stanley (I mean Steve)

    Matt 25…you and Benedict are singing out of my hymn book again

    thank you both

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