It’s been 67 days since I last wrote, not that I’m counting. It’s been a dizzying time. Lent was for real this time, not some cheap version of what people “give up” or “sacrifice.” I didn’t tweet or twit about it, whatever the lingo may be. I just chose to enter a cave, the empty one, and find Jesus there. I swore off social media, my writing, the world. I had to get to that place, the one we chase, where things become silent and we become focused. I was sick of key chains with scripture on it and cheap Jesus. I wanted the real deal, and baby I got it.
After a long hiatus, confirmation into the Catholic faith, a call as an extraordinary minister of Holy Communion, and a husband getting ready for his year-long journey into the faith, I discovered gold. A book that I had heard about so many times I thought the darn thing was stalking me. Everyday at around 3 pm I listen to a radio show on the Catholic Channel, The Jennifer Fulwiler show. The show’s like a religion. It’s a train wreck of a masterpiece, poetic, eclectic and so very Catholic. This woman is normal. She’s got kids, she’s a former atheist, and she’s following her calling and most importantly she’s for real. It’s the me I long for…
So for some time now she’s been talking about this book, Drunks and Monks. And I had no desire to read it. But she kept talking about it like I would die if I didn’t. And so after she had the book’s editor on, Mary O’Regan I was somehow taken in by Mary’s interview and the Holy Spirit practically jumped out of me to get the thing. So I acted swiftly, ordered a copy for me and a friend who is a recovering addict and away I went…
I was still on a whirlwind from my husband coming home and telling me he was going to RCIA in the fall when the book arrived this past Tuesday. It’s 404 pages and I thought, when the heck am I going to finish this thing? So in between work assignments, screaming children and bathroom breaks, I read the book straight through, I’m not kidding. I took it with me wherever I went all day Tuesday and fell asleep with it. And Wednesday morning I had to finish it.
I don’t think I breathed much when reading it, and was, well –somewhere else. As most of you know I am an avid reader, have been my whole life. If someone asked me to describe this book to them, I’m not sure there would be a particular word that exists in the English dictionary to describe it. It’s like what I told my husband before he went on his Emmaus retreat- You just have to experience it for yourself.
There are some times in life when the world stops, and the noise stops and, you are just inside whatever you are in. There are no particular words to describe it, you just have to be there.
There have been poignant stops in my journey when it’s been as if everything around me has been frozen in time, exactly the way it was. This is one of those times…
So coming out of spiritual hibernation, entering into answered prayer and then spiritual warfare, I entered into this book, not a book, but an experience.
Thank you John for being the key to my awakening.
If there is anyone out there who wants a copy of this book but cannot afford it, email me and I will purchase it for you firstname.lastname@example.org.