After a four hour wait (yes, four hours!), I cast my vote during Georgia’s advanced voting today. While waiting in the interminable line, I read a book, briefly chatted with my mom, and I prayed. I hadn’t planned on praying, but I finished my book, and a long wait was still ahead of me. I wasn’t sure if I’d put my rosary back in my purse after recently taking it out, but the first item I felt as I reached into the abyss of my gargantuan purse was my rosary case. I found this comforting, especially since it usually takes me at least a few seconds of searching to find anything in my overstuffed bag. I found it even more comforting to pray the rosary, to finger each smooth, silver bead in my hand and to not worry about the long wait, how the girls were faring with their pop, or the outcome of the election come next Tuesday.
With each Hail Mary I felt an overwhelming sense of peace. I noticed a few people looking at me, and I realized my lips were silently moving as I recited each prayer. I smiled at anyone who caught my glance. I thought about how we’re all God’s people and how His hand is in everything – even this election.
I’d initially pulled out my rosary beads to pray for the election (and honestly, the outcome I hope for), but soon my prayers became about something bigger. I realized my faith has been a tenuous thread lately instead of what it should be – my absolute lifeline. I’ve been putting way too much stock in humans and not in God and when a human disappoints me, instead of remembering that those who practice the faith as well as those who don’t are in no way a reflection of the faith itself, I question God and I wonder why I even bother praying or participating in the sacraments.
Yet as I continued to pray the rosary, I felt God’s love wash over me. I thought of how humans (myself included) have a funny way of messing things up, and I can’t be disappointed in God when I or anyone else fails or lets me down. I felt more peaceful than I’ve felt in a long time as I asked our Blessed Mother to intercede on my behalf, and I knew that whatever happens when the polls close on Tuesday, November 4th, I will still have God on my side.
“When Jesus had taken the wine, he said, ‘It is finished.’ And bowing his head, he handed over the spirit.” (John 19:30)
Dear Jesus, with your last words on the cross we know your redemptive work as well as your suffering were finished and completed. With your great sacrifice, you freed us from our sins and opened the door for new life for all of humankind. The least I can do is trust you even when I’m plagued with doubt, even when the future is uncertain and tainted with darkness. For my job is not finished. I am here to be a Christian witness to the world. I am here to accept suffering as a means of growing closer to you. I am here to continute to give a voice unborn babies and to all those who cannot or aren’t being heard. I am here to love my friends and my enemies. I am here to not give up. I am here to do more than cast a vote and either celebrate or lament. I am not “finished.” Far from it. I am an incomplete work, and I need You to make me whole. So, please, help me learn to rely on You above everything else. Amen.