Trust in the Slow Work of God

Glass is one of the slowest forms of liquid (h/t)

If I had to name a theological assurance that I put my trust into each and every day, it would be “Trust in the Slow Work of God.” Now, I usually understood it to be an amalgamation of Psalm affirmations (Psalm 37:7-9 comes to mind), but I just found out it is actually a poem by a Jesuit Pierre Teilhard de Chardin, though he takes a slightly different angle than I understand it.  I’m sure you already knew that, but it was a gaping hole in my reading!

Here’s his poem for yours (and my) benefit (h/t Steve Bogner):

Above all, trust in the slow work of God.
We are quite naturally impatient in everything
to reach the end without delay.
We would like to skip the intermediate stages.
We are impatient of being on the way to something
unknown, something new.
And yet, it is the law of all progress
that it is made by passing through
some stages of instability –
and that it may take a very long time.

And so I think it is with you;
your ideas mature gradually – let them grow,
let them shape themselves, without undue haste.
Don’t try to force them on,
as though you could be today what time,
(that is to say, grace and circumstances
acting on your own good will)
will make of you tomorrow.

Only God could say what this new spirit
gradually forming in you will be.
Give our Lord the benefit of believing
that his hand is leading you,
and accept the anxiety of feeling yourself
in suspense and incomplete.

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