It was eight o’clock in the morning. My day was in full swing. I had already driven my children to school and was back home again. I had unloaded and reloaded the dishwasher.
As I was heading to my weekly Holy Hour, I checked my calendar and email. And I noticed a message from a publisher I was waiting for, hoping for. So I opened it.
Immediately, my heart sank.
The good news I anticipated—the acceptance of a book proposal which I had been invited to submit—turned out to be crushing. It was not the congratulatory email I was hoping for. It was a rejection. Instead of “yes,” it was “no.”
I started to cry.
Rejection stings; it hurts.
At that moment, I felt hopeless and helpless, almost paralyzed. I did not know what to do next, what to think, where to go, how to process this disheartening news.
And then I remembered: Jesus was waiting for me in the Adoration chapel. I had made a weekly appointment with Him.
As I drove to church, I did not feel like praying. But I had made a commitment to be in the chapel from 9-10 a.m. every Tuesday morning, and I knew I needed to keep it.
As I knelt down, I gazed at Our Lord in the Blessed Sacrament, and immediately, the tears began flowing again.
He saw me. He knew.
I didn’t have to whisper a word. He knew it all.
And He gazed upon me with love and acceptance, not rejection.
After a long while of simply sitting with the Lord, I turned to the readings of the day. Still stinging from the rejection letter, I opened the Scriptures to read:
“… in him it is always ‘Yes.’ For in him every one of God’s promises is a ‘Yes.’ For this reason it is through him that we say the ‘Amen,’ to the glory of God.” (2 Corinthians 1:19-20)
I couldn’t believe the words I just read. So, I read them again. And was equally astounded.
After receiving such disappointing news—a definite “no”—I turned to the Lord, and His response was “yes.”
Yes to my existence.
Yes to my gifts.
Yes to my purpose.
Yes to my belonging to Him.
“… in him it is always ‘Yes.’”
“… in him it is always ‘Yes.’”
And in that prayerful moment, a wave of peace washed over me.
I was able to surrender my disappointment to the Lord and entrust my hurt to Him. I felt a sense of comfort, even in the midst of such devastating news. And while I was uncertain about the future and God’s will for me, I knew with all my heart that even this “no” was part of His better plan for me.
God’s Timing is Perfect
As I sat in the chapel, consoled by these words of His, so many thoughts began to swirl in my mind.
Could this verse that I read, that spoke so directly into my broken heart, be any more perfect?
This Scripture passage, part of the liturgical prayer of the Church, was chosen for this exact day. How long ago was it determined? Moreso, how was it that these words, written by Saint Paul for the Church in Corinth, were also written just for me two millennia later?
God knew all of these details. In fact, He orchestrated them with delicate care.
Yes, He knew the exact day in 2020 that I would receive some heartbreaking news. And that I would need His reassuring words. He also knew that if it wasn’t for my scheduled Holy Hour, I might have missed His gift altogether.
Christ Alone Fills the Emptiness
Looking back, I could have responded in so many ways to my bad news. I could have spent the rest of the morning scrolling through social media, going through the coffee drive-thru, shopping, or keeping busy with mindless activities.
But all of those coping mechanisms would have been escapism. None of them would have brought me to the Adoration chapel, where I felt His peace and heard His consoling words.
This experience helped me realize how important it is to reach out to the Lord immediately upon being hit with a situation that brings disappointment, discouragement, hopelessness, and uncertainty.
Liturgical Prayer Roots Us in Christ
It also convinced me how deeply important praying with the Church’s liturgy is. Because it grounds us in His Word on divinely appointed days. These words of His are living messages He has for us that will root our life in Christ. They are stable even when the world is uncertain. Because “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.” (Hebrews 13:8)
Of course, prayer, even liturgical prayer, is not a magic bullet that instantly fixes our problems, changes our circumstances, or heals our sufferings.
But prayer keeps us tethered to the Lord—the Mighty One, the Author of Life, the Divine Physician. And when we are tethered to Him, He transforms our outlook and emotions. We remember we are not alone, as we receive His grace, feel His love, and hear His specific word for us.
How God’s Yes Has Unfolded
As God’s yes began to take root in my life, it expanded my heart and increased my desire to choose His will and His timing. His yes called me out of myself and my own plans. This meant quieting the noise and distractions, and remaining with Him in prayer.
I continued to write regularly for various online platforms as well as for my own website and email community. I took a writing course, which taught my new insights into the book-writing world. In fact, I have revisited my original book proposal with fresh eyes, and I have new excitement for a topic I have remained passionate about this entire time.
Yes, things unfolded—and continue to unfold—just as they should have. Just as they will for all those who remember that when we place our trust in Him, it is always yes.
This post was originally published on Write These Words and is reprinted here with permission.
Photo by Thays Orrico on Unsplash.