Friday, November 6, 2009

In Christ - Putting the Life Back Into Life

“Apart from Christ we can do nothing of lasting value—in our lives, marriages or our children’s live.  With Christ everything we do has lasting value because of his grace, his divine life at work in and through us. When his Word [resides] in us, we also receive life because his words are spirit and life.” –Kimberly Hahn, Graced and Gifted.  This was the “aha” moment for me this week at my Catholic Moms Group. 

When I was a senior in high school I went to visit a convent for their “Come and See” week long retreat.  I had said, no, to this retreat several times and had several very legitimate excuses.  But, a nice young priest went out of his way to make it possible for me to go, and I realized that you can’t say, no, when God calls you. 

My time at the Daughters of Saint Paul was very eye-opening.  One of the moments I was most struck happened in passing.  We were to spend the morning with some of the nuns learning what they do at their jobs.  They are the media nuns and they make all sorts of Christian media, Christian music, books and movies.  I spent the morning helping one nun fix the color for the front cover of a magazine.  As we were taking a tour of their printing facility, the nun turned to us and said almost in passing, “We do it all for Jesus!”  This shocked me.  What was the deficiency in my upbringing that I had NEVER heard anyone say that before?  Of course! How could I be so stupid? Of course it’s all for Christ.  Everything from the littlest thing to the greatest, these nuns did keeping in mind that their work was for Christ.  It only had value because it was for the sake of Father, Son and Holy Spirit.

At the end of the retreat, I thanked them and told them I was going to go to college and get an education before I make up my mind about my vocation.  On a personal level, I told one nun that I felt a strong call to be a mother (I was young. I should have said wife and mother, because you cannot have one without the other).  But, what they had shown me had brought me to a place of peace in which I felt that I could be complete if I chose to receive Holy Orders.  After much prayer and contemplation (I cannot express fully what a deep, spiritual journey this “prayer and contemplation” was, but it was like going from being 13 yrs. old to 30. It was a huge maturation), God brought Andrew and I together…in Christ…and the rest is history.  Praise be to God!

This is a picture of Andrew and I shortly after we started courting. 
We're pretty young and cute aren't we? 
That was seven years ago. 

1 comment:

Anne said...

AMEN AMEN!! What a beautiful post :) and so true, too! I'm glad to be "along for the ride" on your journey to (and with) Christ.

I had a similar experience with religious life (though I think my folks freaked out a bit about the idea of me being a nun...) and came to a similar conclusion--called to marriage, but not because I was scared of religious life. It was a good feeling--knowing I could do either of them (and be very happy).

Love you :)