I would have to call 2011 the "Year of Disenchantment".
I can recall a 13 month period in my life which was the most depressing (I'll spare you the details). The memory of nearly being evicted in 2006 still takes up residence in my mind. But, outside a couple of events, the past 12 months have not been enjoyable.
Yes, it revolves around my (lack of) economic status. The doubts about finding any kind of employment grow larger, even if they are barely noticeable. The little disappointments have become a little more frustrating. Minor stumbling blocks are seemingly becoming major hurdles. In wanting to "Go Forward", I seem to have lost a lot of ground.
This guy has nothing on me in the worry department.
While I don't consider myself a pessimist, it is becoming harder to be optimistic. I feel more like Jeremiah than Job. The words of the prophet seem more like an empty promise right now:
For I know well the plans I have in mind for you—oracle of the LORD—plans for your welfare and not for woe, so as to give you a future of hope. When you call me, and come and pray to me, I will listen to you. When you look for me, you will find me. Yes, when you seek me with all your heart, I will let you find me—oracle of the LORD—and I will change your lot; I will gather you together from all the nations and all the places to which I have banished you—oracle of the LORD—and bring you back to the place from which I have exiled you.
But, as St. Paul reminds us, God answers in his own time; "delay" is not in His vocabulary, but ours. Of course, questions are begging. Am I seeking Him wholeheartedly? Am I calling and looking for Him sincerely? Is this a battle of wills (one which I can't "win")? What grain of wheat needs to be planted? Is the soil ready for it? Am I truly ready to serve Him as He sees fit?
I had a priest tell me once my honesty would be my salvation. Now, I don't ever think I will ever be ready to tackle the Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius of Loyola (although the Jesuit ideal of seeking and finding God in all things does play a very small part of my spirituality). But the soul searching continues and I don't think I am the one doing the majority of it.
An acquaintance of mine asked me a few days ago if I had made any New Year's resolutions. I responded I hadn't thought about it too much. With the installation of a new calendar only a few hours away, I have decided I will not make any new ones. I have too many which have not come to fruition; there is plenty of pruning in this vineyard to do first before planting new vines.
It is still summarized in what has become my motto.
Let's just say the next 366 days will have their own theme.