Trust in Him

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Interpreting the Call

Go, my child, sell all you have and come follow Me.

Jesus calls us to come follow Him; to take the narrow path that leads to salvation. How can we hope to remain on this path? How can we hope to correctly discern the will of so mighty a God? So often it seems impossible, and for many the difficulties revolving around discernment never really end. But for these, there is something about God that they should know, something they may not have known already. Our God is an awesome God, above all His creation, but He leads us with His own hand among things that we can see. He puts the greatest perfection of our lives within our grasp, and then points it out to us.

Learning to listen to God's voice is not a lifelong process, but accurately interpreting it is. Therefore, before I explain the art of "listening," I will explain a comforting fact concerning our interpretation. Picture, for a moment, the straight and narrow path which you travel. Often you fail and turn down a side path, running in the same direction, but encountering many turns and hills and streams. Every side path down which you turn eventually encounters a fork, one side of which leads right back to the straight and narrow path. It is hard to know what God's will is, but if we tell Him it is our intention to give Him all and pray for His guidance, it is enough for Him. If our best guess as to what we should do is not, perhaps, what is best for us... that will not stop Him from using it for our greater good and guiding us right back to Himself.

God does not make His voice impossible to hear. Rather, He makes it as possible as faith can allow! However, in order to hear God's voice in most natural cases, there are several things that we must do first. We must profess our firm belief in the reality and presence of God, we must speak to Him, asking Him for His help and guidance and dedicating our decision to Him, and we must seek silence outside and in so that we can listen to Him. Jesus has said "Ask, and you shall receive. Seek, and you shall find." These are not empty words! If we speak to Christ about the questions in our hearts, if we seek an answer from Him and pray that the answer we find is from Him, then He will not disappoint us. No matter what our decision, if we offer it to Him then He will open our way to perfection in the direction which we have chosen, even if it means bringing us back where we started.

But isn't it a waste of time if we misinterpret His call? Aren't the round-about ways that we choose less perfect? Perfection in our vocations is the way in which we live them, not the path we choose to walk. We never truly reach perfection in this respect, but it is not the colleges we attend, jobs we choose, and vocations we pursue that decide this. It is, rather, the state of our spirit and our closeness to God and purity of intention. If this moment I have loved God more than anything else, and given everything to Him, and professed that I believe and honor Him above all else and detest sin... then if should die two minutes hence I would have fulfilled my vocation just as much as if I had lived fifty years in spiritual growth and consecrated life. In our faith, we are not looking for the easy way... we are looking for the right Companion, Orientation, and Destination on our journey.

Dear Jesus, I love You and wish to give You myself and everything I do. I earnestly pray for the grace to know Your will... for Your sake, and for the sake of those whom I touch with my life. I trust You, and know that You are guiding me on the way to perfection. Do not let me down, my Lord, for if I should leave Your side for a moment I shall detest myself and regret my life, and be afraid to approach You again. But if I should fall, Jesus, have pity on me and give me the grace to rise again. Through the merit of Your Humiliation You have made me worthy to lift up my eyes even in my sin and many faults, lead me now to the vineyards in which I will serve You. I love You and offer You my life.

1 comment:

  1. Wonderful post Sadie! I really like your second step - finding silence to listen to Him. Great advice.