He Is Faithful
During the first months after my Investiture in August, there was hardly anything more exciting for me than to introduce myself with the new name that I had received: “Sr. Fidelis.” I could not contain my joy, and in most cases, people were similarly excited upon hearing my new name. But one time a woman surprised me when she responded that I had the same name as her health company. To my even greater surprise, as the weeks went by I started seeing variations of my name all over billboards that were advertising the best health care, trustworthy nursing facilities and the like.
It was striking for me to see the Latin word for “faithfulness” so prominently displayed throughout New York City, and it made we wonder: How is it that fidelity is so desirable when it comes to health care, whereas our secular society would look at it as an outdated value or even as a weakness when it comes to faith? The past year has shown us all, painfully, how vulnerable we are, how our lives can be turned upside-down because of a tiny virus. In our physical weakness and frailty, something within us becomes visible; a deep longing for someone who is trustworthy, faithful and loyal is laid bare. Those billboards promise that this “someone” is their institution, and yet, we know that God is the only One Who fulfills that desire within us with His own fidelity that is part of Who He is, as He has revealed over and over again throughout salvation history.
Advent is such a wonderful time to allow that longing to grow within us, to join in with the cry of the Church as she begs the Lord to come, and to take Our Lady as our model, she who “longed for Him with love beyond all telling.” As the eager anticipation grows within us, as we wait for Christmas, we truly have cause for rejoicing – the hours of waiting may be hard at times, but we have the certainty that we will never wait in vain. I remember clearly what it feels like to wait for a friend who never shows up. Excited joy turns into impatience, and eventually, in disappointment I turn my attention elsewhere and give up the waiting altogether. With God, though, this is not a possibility, for He promised to be with us, to be faithful, and so He is. He fulfills and surpasses all our hopes, if we only let Him, not only on Christmas, but every day.
More than ever I have experienced during these months of uncertainty and darkness, because of the pandemic, my deep desire and my need for a Savior on Whom I can always depend. There, in the darkest moments, the light of Christ shines, and more and more, His fidelity becomes visible. I can only imagine how delighted the Lord must be when He sees us, as we come to realize how He carried us all along the way.
Then let us respond to His fidelity with joyful trust, because He alone is trustworthy. May it become like a song in our hearts as we face life’s mountains and valleys “Jesus, I trust in You”.
Sr. Fidelis, CFR Novice