Life can is chaotic this way. We never really know when or why but we do know how. How can I get the love of my life? How can I get that promotion? How can I land that job? These are questions where it seems the answers land in our lap like a dog or cat wanting attention. Why is it though that when we take the time ask the harder questions we never receive an answer. When will I get that promotion? When will I land that job I wanted? When will I find the love of my life?
Patience. We are always told to have patience. "Good things come to those who wait" after all. So why not be willing to wait? That is the real issue here. We are not a very patient society. We are a society that has become dependent on the now mentality. Everyone at some point in their life has heard the word "Now" being demanded of them, more so if you have children.
So how do we break this "Now mentality" and replace it with patience as one of the virtues all over again? The answer is simple. Remember that all things happen in God's time and not our own. Remember that goals are dreams that we like to achieve however, sometimes God has a different plan for us.
I have had a calling to the Priesthood since I was about 9 years old. My dreams were to be a Priest, even more so a Roman Priest. God called me over and over again, each time louder than the previous. I would ignore this because I had a passion for music. Through high school I kept insisting that I was going to be a music teacher. Next though is where I had my first experience. Immediately following my high school graduation, my family moved to Davenport, IA and I didn't know the area and moved with them. I didn't look at any colleges in Iowa prior to the move. The person we lived with worked for the local college, St. Ambrose University. She told me about them and I went to the school and was immediately accepted into their music education program. It was there that I met a father who helped shape my life. I was only at St. Ambrose for a semester, but it was an important step.
My family came back to Ohio and I with them. I struggled in my jobs because my heart wasn't there. I would get promotions but never the promotions I wanted, always the assistant manager. I attempted a few times to go back to college for music education but each time something would come up and I would have to back out. The story of life right? We all have had this happen to us. Family issues, time issues, transportation issues, you name it. That was sign number two that I ignored.
Eventually my relationship went to hell that I was in. We fought and had issues every day. I wasn't happy and I knew why but still denied to accept it. It was in 2001 when I finally had a therapist I was seeing tell me that I was struggling because I wasn't answering my calling. After all, she should know because although she was great at counseling her heart wasn't their. This was sign number three. With her assistance she helped me reconnect with people who I had rode off. At this point I was a priest but not Roman. I obtained my full ordination, but again not Roman.
I had a church and everything was going great. We were large. We provided services. We were compassionate and merciful to all. We supported the neighborhood. Everything was going great, except for one thing, my calling was still knocking. Next thing I knew I was attending Catholic Mass again different days while attempting to serve my church. Here we have sign number four.
That carrot that I placed in front of my face as my goals was only going further away because I was chasing the wrong carrot. I was chasing what I wanted and not answering what God wanted. If only I would have been patient and actually do what I felt was right I never would have suffered through what I believed to be my own sorrow. I would have been a happier person the entire time.
It works a lot like walking into and windstorm. We are fighting against 35MPH winds when really we should be using the wind to our advantage. Usually after fighting the winds we get where we thought we wanted to go and usually find the item is sold out, it wasn't what we wanted, or no one was there. Take this as a simple sign that if we had patience and waited another time things would have gone differently.
So the next time you say when or why, let the question be why aren't I using my patience right now? The phrase "let go and let God" is not only beautiful but also true.
Yours in Faith,