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These three words may sound jarring at first, but let's take a closer look. Chaos is not a situation we like to find ourselves in, is it? It can make us feel vulnerable, helpless, and hurting. I usually pray to God to get me out of it as quickly as possible! A more realistic prayer might be, "God, give me the courage to face the chaos."

It takes courage to enter into the chaos, even as I'm learning that chaos can be transformative. When we enter in rather than kick and scream, our God will meet us there. In Jesus, God became vulnerable when He was born into our world. In the experience of vulnerability that chaos creates, we suffer as Jesus did. The suffering itself is not the good; its value radiates from the love that grows within as we unite ourselves with Him.

With the gift of courage from the Spirit, we are able to live in the powerful awareness of God's abundant love even in the midst of our chaotic world. Courage is passionate. Courage is to be found in gazing on the person of God, resting in God with wholehearted attention.

In contemplation, we surrender to God. We "find" God who has already found us. If chaos feels as though everything is out of control, so does contemplation! Both are experiences of letting go of certainty and surrendering to Mystery.

May we pray to welcome the darkness of chaos so we might be transformed into light!

May we pray for the passion of courage so we might grow in love through suffering!

May we pray for the gift of contemplation so we might live in union with our God!

Sister Virginia DeVinne