The Joy of Monotony

Hello, My Dears!
I pray that you had a lovely Fourth of July! The rain here stopped our fireworks, but we had a nice picnic with family earlier in the day. I just love these little traditions that we share together! I grew up in a family who had very few traditions, and so I rejoice in these regular “gather-togetherings” that my husband’s family is so fond of. I think my Jeff grows weary of doing the same thing, year after year; but to me, these are the things that make life worthwhile. I find so much comfort in the “comfortableness” of it all; I love the chit-chat, the casseroles, the homemade icecream (especially Papa’s homemade icecream!), the just knowing what to expect. The occasional surprise makes it all the more special, but it is the traditions that bind us together as a family.
I guess I’m a little like a child in this. It was G.K. Chesterton who wrote of this peculiar love of monotony in such a way that enlightened me: “Because children have abounding vitality, because they are in spirit fierce and free, therefore they want things repeated and unchanged. They always say, ‘Do it again’; and the grown-up person does it again until he is nearly dead. For grown up people are not strong enough to exult in monotony. It is possible that God says every morning, ‘Do it again’ to the sun; and every evening, ‘Do it again’ to the moon. It may not be automatic necessity that makes all daisies alike; it may be that God makes every daisy separately, but has never got tired of making them. It may be that He has the eternal appetite of infancy; for we have sinned and grown old, and our Father is younger than we. The repetition in Nature may not be a mere recurrence; it may be a theatrical encore.” (Orthodoxy)
Isn’t that beautiful? I can just hear God saying to the sun every morning, “Do it again!” With such a voice to shake the heavens! It puts our odd little habits and rituals in a new light, does it not? But as frail human beings, we do tend to tire of things rather quickly. Which always make me wonder: Why have I never grown tired of God? In fact, the more I have of Him, the more I seem to want. This desire is insatiable, unquenchable, and can only be divine in it’s birth. Is this the “God-shaped void” of which Augustine spoke? I am certainly no philosopher. I can only attest to what moves my heart, and unfailingly continues to move it over so many years. Love. Love is incomprehensible. How can I continue to care for the two creatures that came from my own body when they, at times, treat me in such reprehensible a manner? How can we forgive those who have committed heinous wrongs to us? How can we accept as real One that we have never seen? This feeling that is stirred inside is the only explanation. Only love can surmount these obstacles. And God is Love. It doesn’t make sense. God doesn’t make sense, and yet, He is all that makes sense in this universe. Because, when I, like Brother Lawrence, am able to live out every little action for Him, I am filled with such inexplicable joy. My life has meaning. And I am able to love so completely, that I know it can only come from Him.
But how I do prattle on. What I’m really trying to say is I always feel Him there, in these little gatherings. I think it pleases Him that we keep these traditions. I believe every year he is up there saying, “Do it again!” And so I rejoice to do so. What a lovely gift, is family.

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