Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Taking A Step Back

It's still very early on in my 'retreat after the retreat' but already I have been sensing much peace about what I have experienced so far. I have no doubt I will continue to understand things more fully and/or have new things revealed to me in the coming months. Discernment is not a quick process and for some, it takes a good long while. I know fully well that I do not know or understand all there is to know and understand about this vocation, or about my specific experiences at the convent. But I trust that in His time, He will show me. He will guide me if only I let Him.

It is always stressed when girls go home from visits that they not label themselves 'future CFR's. Some might think this is odd if a girl feels especially peaceful about the process. (There are of course cases where girls will know for sure during that visit and will begin taking steps toward entrance almost immediately, but I am speaking for those whom that scenario does not apply.) It is important to understand how big of a decision all of this is and the emotions and thrills that can arise during a visit. It is very easy to get caught up in 'the high' and not really see the big picture until later. So they are very careful to always tell those who come to them to continue to be open to all things, seeking always to follow the will of the Father.

It is easy to label yourself in a moment of excitement. It is easy to say you are this or that and be so sure of it right then. You might run off and tell all of your friends and family that you know exactly what you want and need and that's where your life is going. And then later, something comes up that doesn't fit into your little plan and you're stuck. You were so sure of your future that now you don't know what to do. You're supposed to be this or that. You ARE this or that. So what do you do with whatever just came up? -- So much conflict. This is why it's so important to remain open throughout discernment and not get carried away with your own desires.

Taking all that I have experienced and learned and been told into consideration, I have not labeled myself a future CFR. I still love the community very much and respect their charism. It gives you a whole new level of love to experience it first-hand. I would like to visit the community again, experience it again. My deepest desire is to do the will of my Father and I do believe that He has allowed for my heart to rejoice in the possibility of this community. Again, I stress that I have not yet labeled myself.

It is a very difficult thing to explain. It's hard to really articulate the idea that I could be so peaceful and sure of something while still remaining open to the possibility of.. anything else.

I have ideas about what my future holds. I know there are things that I need to do and there are other things I want to do with my time to serve our Lord. There are things I think are important that I experience and that I desire to experience. I do not wish to spend one second doing work which is not done in honor of our Lord. And what's more important, I believe my plans thus far honor that desire and that commitment. Nothing is set on a timeline but I do have general ideas about the coming years and what will be accomplished. But then I remember something which has been spoken of repeatedly in the last week...

Ultimately this boils down to me living in God's time. It is not MY time. Sure, God has given me my life and in some sense, it is my life. But God gave me my life that I might give it back to Him. And if I am not doing that, I might as well not exist. Time does not matter if it is being spent on things that do not honor and praise our Almighty Father. So, I give it all back to Him and trust that He will, in HIS time, lead me where He would have me. If that is back at the Our Lady of Guadalupe Convent, Praise Him! That would be beautiful. If it does not, praise Him still! Because joy is found in serving the Lord - in loving Him in what He has me do: no matter the location, no matter the work.


Blogger onionboy said...

May the Lord grant you wisdom and patience as you continue to discern.

11/28/2006 08:09:00 PM  

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