“the reckless possibility of grace”

Surprised by grace. Rescued despite myself. “How sweet the grace that saved a wretch like me.” Grace breaks into our experiences and mindset, doesn’t it? Grace is not linear, cause and effect — it’s simplicity inside of complexity, the improbable butterfly that triggers the hurricane.

Do you know grace? Here’s a recent experience of mine. I was with my son, his wife and my three fabulous grandchildren in Ireland for 17 days. We stopped to see Donegal Castle and then ate a late breakfast in a small cafe across the street. As I left, I saw a W B Yeats poem framed on the wall “When you are old” and read it. Something in it triggered a vague sense of deja vu or poetic recognition.

Several days later, in Dublin, I found a brochure in the hotel lobby announcing a Yeats exhibition at the Irish National Library, and told my son that I wanted to see this. “The rest of you can go somewhere else” I said, thinking he wasn’t likely to be interested. But he surprised me, and we two went together and spent an hour there.

Now, back home in Australia, I have the sense that my son and I are closer. A surprising hour at the Yeats exhibition, where we uttered no words but wandered together through something neither of us expected — I can’t get this experience out of my mind. Don’t you think grace is great!

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