The Days of Noah
For as the days of Noah were, so will be the coming of the Son of Man. For as in those days before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day Noah entered the ark, and they knew nothing until the flood came and swept them all away, so too will be the coming of the Son of Man. Mt. 24:37-39
It’s amazing the damage that can occur from a tiny hole in a water pipe. Floods great and small happen while we are going about life somewhere else. When you discover the damage, valued possessions floating in the water and the smell: shock is followed by anger and indignation. This is so unfair…
The “Days of Noah” implies a flood of ordinary things that drowns the most important thing by sheer volume.
Eating, drinking and marrying are ordinary and wholesome things. But these activities alone can’t satisfy our deepest hungers. Without a balance between divine and natural nourishment we will over consume them to the point excess. Without attending the marriage of our own soul with God we will remain painfully lonely. Treating the pain of this persistent loneliness can result in a flood of work, debt or commitments that are unsustainable.
The first truth of spirituality is that God already loves you. The second is that you will always feel some emptiness in this life. And it’s not really emptiness but spaciousness. How we meet this ordinary spaciousness is the most important task of our lives. The more we accept the love of God the more we will be able to accept the vastness of our being and make peace with it.
This peace is a raft that keeps us from drowning in superficiality.
We are also living in a time of flood. Technology now multiplies and accelerates the volume of good, and not so good things, to the point that we are overwhelmed by the volume of superficiality. Two deadly symptoms of this overwhelm are passivity and indifference, which are forms of suffering that suffocate our appreciation of what is most important.
This Advent build yourself a simple ark that you can enter for moments or longer each day. Try to not bring too much with you. The ark is your enclosure, a little interior space to save you from drowning. In its safety meet the Love by which we are taken into the marriage of heaven and earth.
By Mark Blom, OMI – Vocation Director OMI Lacombe Canada Province
To contact Fr. Mark for advice about discernment and vocation direction. He can meet with you by phone to conduct a short vocation assessment to help you find your way. Contact him at email@example.com to arrange for an appointment.