I spent some time after college living and working in France. On the way home after work, I would sometimes purposely stay on the bus, well past my stop, riding to the end of the line and waiting for the bus to turn around and take me home. This was certainly one way to take the scenic route! No time constraints or cares, no iPhone or Instagram to entertain me, usually just a good book, the city views, and my thoughts (and who am I kidding, maybe a baked goodie too?!). These long rides gave me the space to dream, and wonder wanted I wanted to do next in my life. In my tender and youthful enthusiasm- I wanted to do it all! But alas, we must let our yes mean yes, and our no mean no. Saying yes on your wedding day, for example, means saying no to all other romantic partners; accepting that ministry job your heart has yearned for over a corporate gig means saying no to a shiny new car. Often, our culture will tell us “you can have it all”; but the practical reality of life is that we can’t, we won’t and we shouldn’t.
You Will Always Have Enough
The Gospel, on the other hand, the Good News of Christ, tells us that we will always have enough. It is in the gap between our wants and his Will that we can find ourselves mired in anxiety, paralyzed by indecision, or worse yet in a state of despair. The work of our lives will be to crawl out of this gap and into the freedom that God wants to give us, that His plan is better- if only we have eyes to see! It would be nice to wake up each morning with a checklist of God’s to-do’s clearly outlined and calendared- making his direction clear and our lives easy to navigate and plan. Instead, He often works in silence or through others- quite the opposite of clear and easy! If we want to look to Jesus for direction in our dreams and decisions, we shouldn’t have to look far- we cannot have him living on the peripheries- he must live in our center. That means making a radical choice every day to view our identity as a son or daughter of God before we are a mother, father, friend, or professional. Then with consistency and love, we must follow his commandments:
“If you love me, you will keep my commandments” (John 14:35).
So simple yet so difficult- this is the formula for forging saints, and it is the formula for me and you! Making God the center and following his truth, we are not only training for the hard times that will come but illuminating our path with his word. Whether it’s a pastry-filled bus ride or a long walk this summer, may this season be filled with the big bold dreams that come with looking to Jesus and placing him at the center of our lives!
Renee has a background in education, linguistics, and fundraising. She currently works in the non-profit sector raising funds for community health and wellness initiatives. She generously gives of her time and talent as a member of Pilgrim Center of Hope’s Speaker Team and is the Emcee of the upcoming 2021 Catholic Women’s Conference, July 16-21.
Answering Christ’s call, Pilgrim Center of Hope guides people to encounter Him so as to live in hope, as pilgrims in daily life. See what’s happening & let us journey with you! Visit PilgrimCenterOfHope.org.
Cover Photo by Zeromancer44, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons