I have always wondered at T.S. Elliot’s famous ending from The Little Gidding, the last of his Four Quartets:
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
Through the unknown, remembered gate
When the last of earth left to discover
Is that which was the beginning;
At the source of the longest river
The voice of the hidden waterfall
And the children in the apple-tree
Not known, because not looked for
But heard, half-heard, in the stillness
Between two waves of the sea.
Since poems are designed to be pondered, I will not indulge you with my musings; I will encourage you to savour or wrestle with it. I was reminded of this poem again when I recently came upon a Franciscan saying:
He has put a path before you that always leads to Him. No matter what vocation He calls you to, you have only to be willing and to listen to take the path He puts before you.
Knight of the Holy Eucharist
Jesus is the Alpha and Omega, the first and the last, the beginning and the end. He is, as Leonard Sweet says, “the centre and circumference of the spiritual life”. He is both the subject and the object of our prayer, and every path we take always leads to Him if only we are willing to listen and take the path before us. It resonates with the Proverb:
Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways know him,
and he will make your paths straight
Every path you take can be the path to know Him. In fact this proverb tells us to make sure that whatever path you travel – you intend to know Him – for no matter what route you take, in all your ways seek, ask, knock to know Him.
The way you take and know Him is the path God straightens so that it always leads to Him.
May we have eyes to see and ears to hear.