“Fulfill in faith what you enabled them to promise in joy”
The other day I was at an amazing ceremony; a new order of nuns in our area was receiving their final vows! Final vows for religious are basically like their wedding. And if you could imagine four weddings at once that’s how awesome this was. And not only that but they were getting married to God! Amazing times! The service was incredibly beautiful, an experience of a lifetime. One thing from the vows jumped out at me though. When the Arch-Bishop was giving them the Solemn Blessing he said this, “Send them the Spirit of holiness; help them to fulfill in faith what you have enabled them to promise in joy.” And doesn’t that just sum up all our lives, eh?
How often do all of us start something “in joy” and then get to the tough part and fall away? Say you are trying to learn a new instrument; for the first few weeks you are so excited about learning your new… lets say cello. But then the excitement fades and you realize that it involves sore fingers and lots of scales and you can’t really play anything good yet. Now you do one of two things: you either give up, or you don’t. If you give up then that joy dies and you don’t get to experience the joy that comes from successfully learning the cello. Or you don’t! You continue on through the hard times and eventually become a successful Cello player! You now can impress all your friends and family and have your grandma liking all your YouTube videos of your cello 😀
The spiritual life is exactly like this. How many times have you come home from a youth conference all set to conquer the world and live out your faith? And how long does that last? Many times it will last a few weeks, maybe less, and then you realize again that the world is a big place and being catholic is hard. You may just give up and stop trying to live your faith, until the next conference comes around.
But this isn’t how we should live our faith! It’s not a life that is lived from one conference to the next, or one inspiring sermon to the next! The really heart of the spiritual life is living every day with a love for God. Even when you can’t feel him, or you just do not want to sit down and pray that day. Saying a prayer every morning and just giving every day to God, that is the spiritual life! And when you do, you start to get that good feeling again. Just like becoming a successful Cello player, with dedication you can become a Saint. And being a Saint, well, being a Saint sounds pretty awesome to me!
By the way this ceremony was really awesome, have any of you ever gone to something like it before? Or are any of you friends with local religious? If you aren’t you should, most people can’t get frightened off by the “holier than thou” idea but really they are awesome people! Stay faithful all!