On October 1st, 2022, Sr Meagan and I knelt before Archbishop Marcel Damphousse, Archbishop of Ottawa-Cornwall, and renewed for another year our promises of chastity, obedience, and simplicity. This was Sr Meagan’s first time to renew and my fourth.
There have been many times over the years just before promises that I find myself asking the Lord, “why me?” I tell him that I am not holy enough. I am not strong enough. I am not smart enough. I am just not enough in any way. These questions stem from the lies that I continue to hear the enemy whisper in my ears. During these times my anxiety rises and doubts start to fill my mind. I know this is the enemy trying to get me to walk away. I have come to realize recently that these doubts are not in the Lord but in my capabilities. I liken it to the story of Peter walking on water. I take my eyes off of the Lord and look to myself, and I begin to sink. It is in these times that I call out even more to the Lord, reach for his truth for me, and allow him to pull me back up to the surface. In this place, standing next to Jesus, I find peace for I know I am right where he wants me to be.
This year the Lord has answered my questions in a few different ways such as lines from a movie, a film series, and his scripture. I love movies. One of my all-time favorite movies is A League of Their Own which is based on the story of the All-American Girls Professional Baseball League. They were in existence from 1943-1954. (Spoiler alert!!) Near the end of the movie, there is an interaction between the characters of Dottie Hinson and her manager Jimmy Dugan. Dottie made the decision to walk away from the game after her husband returned from the War. In this scene, Jimmy notes that she will regret it if she quits, and Dottie comes back saying;
“It just got too hard.”
Jimmy retorts, “It is supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would do it.
It is the hard that makes it great.”
As I sat with this quote, I realized that it does not only apply to baseball, but I can relate to it in my vocational call. It is true, life as a Sister is not always easy. Contrary to popular belief, it is not all about praying all the time. Some days can be difficult spiritually, emotionally, and sometimes physically. It can range from the task at hand, or even simply relating to others inside and outside of the Community. Sometimes at the end of the day, your body is totally exhausted as you climb into bed at night. We always have to remember to rely on the Lord’s providence to get us through each and every day. With Him, all things are possible. It is true, not everyone is called to live this life. However, it is said that God does not call the equipped, he equips the called.
Next, I thought about The Chosen series. Episode 7 of season 1 stuck out for me in particular during this time of prayer which was the “Calling of Matthew.” (Spoiler alert!!) After Jesus calls Matthew, Simon questions Jesus about his decision, asking;
“Do you even know this guy?”
Jesus answered, “YES.”
Then he turned to Simon and said,
“You didn’t get it when I chose you either.”
When you think about it, many of the Apostles did not know why they were chosen. They did not question, they just followed; for they knew deep down that for some special reason they were called. They went in faith, leaving everything behind to follow Jesus. This was just as I did when I left Texas in August of 2016. I may not always know or understand why he brought me here to Canada, but I do know that this is where he wants me. There is this deep underlying peace and joy, that tells me not to fear and to trust in God’s providence. I just need to hold onto and remember this whenever the questions come.
Finally, he reminded me of John 15:16:
“It was not you who chose me, but I who chose you to go out and bear fruit that will remain, so that whatever you ask the Father in my name will be given you.”
Jesus always speaks the truth. He chose ME. Even with all my brokenness and struggles, he still chose me for this way of life. As a wise bishop once told me, I need to hang on and persevere, for, in the end, the Lord will reveal to me the reasons for the various crosses and struggles that I have endured, and will endure. He has chosen each one of his daughters and sons to their state in life. We may not know the full plans of God, but we need to trust that he will not lead us astray.
- What has the Lord chosen you to do? Ask the Lord, simply and directly.
- What lies are keeping you from pursuing it?
- Next, ask for the Lord’s truth and listen. He will speak His truth to you. He always does. It may be a whisper, but it is there.
The Lord will give you all that you need to do what he has asked you to do. Have faith. You are chosen.