Wherever you go, God will put the people He wants you to meet in your path.
This evening in the gym (see, the gym can be spiritual 😉 ), I was speaking with a man that I met a few weeks ago. Somehow, we got talking then and he had asked me about my job. So, I told him. He told me he agreed with me and thanked me for doing that work (actually, this happens to me quite a lot)! We had a big talk about women’s role in society and how women are not feminine anymore. He said his wife is often made to feel guilty for looking after the children and he tried to reassure her that she was doing the best job possible. What a good husband, I thought! When we parted ways that time, I said to him, as a lot of us say to many people, “God bless!”. I went home, he went home, and I hadn’t spoken to him since then.
Today, weeks later, he saw me, came up to me and asked me if I was spiritual because he remembered and heard very clearly that I had said, “God bless” and he had been thinking about it. He also said to me that he felt that I was at peace and he wanted that peace (this is funny for me because my life is a complete mess right now. I am in a huge pickle so I find it strange that he should feel that from me).
We talked for about an hour about all sorts of things. He was baptised a Presbyterian, but his wife is a Catholic (and a good one, from what he says) and they are raising their children as Catholics, but he has lots of questions. Nonetheless, he wants them to have a faith so that they have a good start in life. He also spoke about how he wanted lots of children (his wife is expecting their third) and I told him the quote my mum says, which is that only God knows how many children it takes to bind a couple together. We were definitely on the same wave-length here!
So, we’re talking and talking about loads of things. He says he gets frustrated with people in the Church; they’re so hypocritical. I told him what Fr Thwaites said about the Church being a hospital. I said there are tons of people in the Church I don’t like. Sometimes, the meanest people in my life are Catholics but Holy Mother Church will leads us to God, not them. We’ve got to love them and what do we expect when even Christ was crucified for loving His children? I said we have to accept that none of us are saints. I spoke about St Therese and the little way and what a struggle it is to do the little things but that this is also a path to sainthood.
I tell him about how to become a Catholic, to read things on fisheaters.com, talk to the parish priest etc. Eventually, he tells me that sometimes he receives Holy Communion at Mass. I said to him that he absolutely must not do this. He must become a Catholic before he does this. So then we talk a bit more and I discover that he went to a Catholic boarding school in Ghana and lo and behold, he was confirmed there! So, he IS a Catholic but somehow he didn’t realise or he was very confused about it all because it happened when he was young! He had thought there was more to it than that. That there would have been weeks and years of preparation. Well, I was never prepared for it. It just happened one day. He said that he sort of remembered the priest asking about this before his children were baptised. Thanks be to God! So then I ask him if he’s ever thought about confession? He says he has. I speak about it a little bit, about the benefits of it, how this can be such a great cure when your prayer life is an uphill struggle.
Eventually, I have to go home because it’s 10:30pm but I feel like I did a lot more good skipping most of my workout to speak to him…
He kept saying to me that God was giving him all these signs and asking things of him and we both agreed that God wanted us to speak for a good reason. I suppose this meeting was a sign for me too, but I’m not sure what it means. Maybe it means I’m not as bad as I think I am? I don’t know. Maybe it means my life is less of a mess than I think. It’s a mystery.