Most of the time, I find myself pondering what it is I am “supposed to do” with my life. Is where I am, where I’m supposed to be? Am I really, truly happy with what I’m doing? There are plenty of similar questions. I wonder if my search for happiness isn’t ingrained in us from an early age as the “American Dream” or the purpose of life.
One question, however, constantly tugs at me: How can a Christian man follow God and not become a pastor? A daunting question. Even though St. Paul gives an answer in 1 Corinthians 12. We are not all meant to be the same; we are, however, meant to serve our God.
The question might be even more disconcerting for Catholics, who give much of their lives over to God when they become priests…not that ministering anywhere is easy or without sacrifice.
I have had, however, only one moment of absolute clarity, where I felt an answer to that question. I had just finished printing out a manuscript, punched holes through the left side, and bound it. As it stared up at me and I stared down at it, I felt a moment of wholeness. I knew, in that instant, that I was intended for a purpose.
That doesn’t mean I don’t still question. That I don’t still waver. I often forget that moment. It seems so tiny and insignificant against the stark reality of life and the difficulty of publishing.
Yes, life without hardship and struggle means the prize at the end is worth less, but I think we’d all like a bit less despair and a lot more joy and peace. We must trust that God has a plan, even when we cannot see it. That is the hardest part of faith.