"I am obliged to be still. I am obliged to wait. I am obliged to reflect on myself: I am obliged to bear being alone. I am obliged to bear pain, and I am obliged to accept the burden of my own self. All this is hard. But may it not be the case that God is waiting for me in this stillness? May it not be the case that he is doing here what Jesus says in the parable of the vine: "Every branch that does bear fruit he prunes, that it may bear more fruit." (John 15:2) If I learn to accept myself in these days of stillness, if I accept the pain, because the Lord is using it to purify me - does this not make me richer that if I had earned a lot of money? Has not something happened to me that is more durable and fruitful than all those things that can be counted and calculated? A visit by the Lord can present itself in a new light when we see it as part of Advent. For when we rebel against it, this is not only because it is painful or because it is hard to be still and alone: we rebel against it because it seems so meaningless. But it is not in the least meaningless! In the structure of human life as a whole, it is profoundly meaningful. It can be a moment in our life that belongs to God, a time when we are open to him and thus learn to rediscover our own selves."
I know I'll still have difficult days to face ahead and I still have a long way to go on this journey of grief; but, these words do bring peace. As the book goes on to say:
"He [Christ] is already present in a hidden manner.... Every moment has its value, even if all I can do is to endure in silence. If God exsists, then there is always something to hope for, even where no human voice can any longer summen me to hope..... Ultimately, all this finds its unity in the joy that God has become a child who encourages us to trust as children trust."
I am learning to trust!