There is a simple chair in a grand cathedral. If it were to look up, it would see Gothic grandeur and sunlight streaming in from the windows. If it were to look down, it would see, and quite possibly feel, the greatness, for the tombs of many of the most exceptional in history are resting beneath the heavy stone floor. It is just a simple chair and admittedly has many similarly unassuming brothers and sisters “seated” all around. Often, a human will come and sit and rest on the chair and perhaps listen to the hourly prayer or read from a guidebook or listen to the choir or the organ music or just rest for a moment or two. What does the person think or feel while sitting in the chair? Perhaps the chair knows. Is he or she tired with aching feet? Is his or her heart as heavy as the burden of bags and parcels carried? Has the person come from across the sea or merely from a few streets away…to pray? (Oh, the prayers this chair has heard from the hearts and mouths of those across the globe – the longing whispers, the silent pleas to a God who listens. Regardless of country of origin, our chair can recount these prayers, which vary tremendously in language spoken, yet express exactly the same hopes and yearnings: “Please heal _______.” “Please protect_______” “Thank you for _____” “I’m sorry…” When a person prays on this simple chair in this echoing place, it is quite possible that God’s hearing becomes even more acute. The chair would know.) One thing is certain, once the human rises from this seat – probably not having noticed the sustaining support and rest that was so recently given – and carries on, his or her load will be lightened by some measure and comfort will have been received. Feet will be less sore and exhaustion will no longer consume. The heart, too, will have found a bit of ease. That human being will feel better. The chair, once again, will have fulfilled its duty, and its destiny.
I would like to be the patron saint of that chair.