Evening came and morning followed -- the twelve thousand four hundred and nineteenth day, and thirty-fourth anniversary, of my life in this world.
Like my brothers and sisters in the spirit, I am still here in this world, but my hope is that I am much less of the world, without being any less for the world and its people. On the contrary, I pray I am becoming more committed to the world, more truly grounded in the God of the Word made flesh.
I am still here in formation with the Capuchin Franciscan friars. I have not left. I have not backed out. I have not felt second thoughts. My hand is on the plow, and my eyes are looking straight ahead. I don't care where I go, as long as it is going to Jerusalem. There I must go to build up and be built up.
I am still here, learning to think not as people of the world think, but as God thinks. Learning to see not as those who want only this world, the world as it is, but to see as God sees. To see not with my own mind's eye, which sees only its idols, but with the mind's-eye of God, whose gaze sees us into being and whose sight is our icon.
It is right to be here still with the brothers, and every day it feels more right that I remain where I am, where I have been placed, or, rather, displaced. For I could have continued easily in my good way of life in Boston. There I could have followed along, one way or another, for many more days without number. It was good to be there. Were I to return now, it would still be good. Indeed, it is good that everyone I love there remains there, and I depend on them to be still on their way.
But my goal is beyond the good I have known in any one place, even Boston. I have been looking for a deeper transformation of my life, especially in the character of my interpersonal relationships, and in my relationship within the Church and with its people.
For the sake of my continuing personal conversion, and for the sake of a world groaning for renewal, I have picked up my tent, moved into a new country, and made camp. And I will be here for a time, looking less at the world at large, looking less at only myself, and looking more at the house in which I dwell and the people who dwell under the same roof.
I have just gotten here. I am still here. I will remain here.