The simplest way to describe my vocation is to think of making a cup of tea. You’ve got a tea bag. You need boiled water. Put them together, and something wonderful happens!
The tea bag – lifeless and tasteless on its own. The tea bag has a hint of aroma, flavour potential, but it needs to be partnered with something more. My tea bag is that I was raised in the Catholic faith. Yet up until my first year of university, I lived life my own way. I was selfish, prideful, spoiled in some respects, and I felt empty. There was a yearning in my heart to live to my full potential, to have ‘flavour’. I was searching for something, someone to fill the emptiness and loneliness I felt.
Boiled water – there is power when you see water at a rolling boil. When I think of boiling water, I think of the Holy Spirit. The moment I encountered the Holy Spirit in a powerful way was on a weekend retreat. My life was changed! I experienced God in a way which changed my understanding from God who is ‘out there’ to God who is personally interested in me. This combination of my desire for something more – that tea bag, and the power of the Holy Spirit – boiled water, came together to create something tasty.
Steeped tea – a beautiful combination of flavour, power and time. When I received God’s love, my heart changed, my plans changed, and my way of life changed. I became more giving, more loving, and found joy in serving those around me. I spent time growing in my relationship with the Lord. I spent time learning to love without counting the cost. I spent time asking God the big questions about where best to serve him with my life. And the answer was the deep, rich, flavourful gift of my vocation as a Sister.
So what do you do with a cup of steeped tea? Savour every sip. I am so grateful for every moment of my religious life, and the new taste experience that comes with each sip.