Sisterhood is one of my favorite things this sweet life of mine contains. Biological and spiritual and just feminine relationships between us women are so nurturing and life-giving and ahhh…bliss! I don’t think brotherhood has a chance on this but then again, I wouldn’t exactly know, ya know?
My lil’ sis, Teazzy Baby (most likely Teagan to you), is a beaming light of love, humility and wisdom. By just being her beautiful self, she gently pushes me in my faith. She also does this by sending me things to read all the time and one in particular applies to this splendid March 3; the feast day of St. Katharine Drexel. Teags (still most likely Teagan to you) sent me a quote from St. Katharine a while ago that reads, “Holiness consists in one thing: to do God’s will, as He wills it, because He wills it.” I responded before the picture came through heheee oops!
These words are piercing. At least to me, they go straight to the heart because God’s will reigns and mine never will. How ridiculous does this sound: “Holiness consists in one thing: to do my will, as I will it, because I will it.” That’s pure awfulness. But boy OH boy, is it a reality for many of my days.
But we’re turning the emphasis back to God! If we are in constant conversation with Him and allow the Holy Spirit to guide us, the Father will will us away from societal standards (gettt on ready). When this time comes (and it’s not a one time thing so gettt on ready x3902), people pleasing will suck life out of you. We should never feel pressured into having to justify ourselves in response to shame. Shame is directly from the devil – don’t ever forget that. God is God and we are not so if He wills it, He wills it and there is nothing we can do to change His perfect mind.
A few days after my sister sent me the quote and I reflected a whole lot on it, I saw it liiive. In action. Basically a Broadway show. Except it was in the metro in Washington D.C. during the March for Life.
I hopped on to the metro to make my way down to the March with a group from my school and was content with the standing room only. A 45ish-year-old man got my attention, scooted over and told me to take a seat next to him. You may be thinking this story has a creepy ending but I promise it’s the absolute opposite of creepiness and leads to total awe!!
I accepted his request and we got talking. After working for 25 years as a single man, he discerned a call to the priesthood. He quit his job as a police chief, moved to Boston to go to a seminary that specializes in sems age 30+ and will be ordained a priest in 2021 if that is what God wills of him!
WOW. How remarkable is that story?! God is gooooOd. I shared with him that I also recently changed my life path (not as drastic but due to listening to God indeed!). If all goes as we are currently planning for, this seminarian and I will graduate in the same month and enter the “workforce” at the same time with our new callings. On that day, we promised to pray for each other throughout our new studies 🙂 The best part is that I just discovered the seminary’s “Meet Our Seminarians” page on their website so I found him and his contact info and an email has been sent!
25 years in. A police chief. The kindest of men who fervently prayed and asked God daily what He willed of him. I didn’t directly ask this man but I guarantee you that this wasn’t the easiest decision he ever made. To drop everything, explain to his friends and family that he would be leaving Missouri because God willed him to religious life and carry through with this radical transition. What a beautiful example of devotion to the Lord! I really did think after we said our goodbyes, ‘was that even real because I sweeear, that story is almost too fairytale-like (Catholic surrender genre) to be true.’
The theme goes on because as our group was preparing to leave for the March the day before, we were gathered in a local parish’s lobby and I found a CD. I love Catholic resources so much so that my Bible study kindly laughs at me for all the podcasts, blogs and videos I talk about. But a girl can’t attribute borrowed wisdom to herself, right? The CD by Matthew Kelly was called “The Best Way To Live.” I’m a Matthew Kelly fan, I strive to live in the best way and I was told it was free so I called it mine with the biggest smile on my face!
In Mr. Kelly’s talk, he passionately shared, “Most people spend the first half of their lives saying ‘I’m too young for that stuff’ and the second half of their lives saying, ‘I’m too old for that stuff’.” He went on to go through this [paraphrased] list in his darling Austrian accent:
- Tiger Woods – 3 when he broke 50 for 9 holes of golf
- Mozart – 8 when he wrote his first symphony
- Charles Dickens – 12 when he quit school to work in a factory pasting labels on shoe polish…to get his father out of jail
- Anne Frank – 13 when she began her diary
- Ralph Waldo Emerson – 14 when he enrolled at Harvard
- Paul McCartney – 15 when John Lennon invited him to join a band
- Bill Gates – 19 when he co-founded Microsoft
- William Shakespeare – 31 when he wrote Romeo and Juliet
- Thomas Jefferson – 33 when he wrote The Declaration of Independence
- Mother Teresa – 40 when she began her work in Calcutta
- Pablo Picasso – 55 when he began a revolution in the arts
- Dom Pérignon – 60 when produced the first glass of champagne
- Oscar Hammerstein – 64 when he wrote The Sound of Music
- Winston Churchill – 65 when he became Britain’s prime minister and picked a fight with Hitler
- Nelson Mandela – 71 when he was released from more than 20 years in South African prison and four years later at 75, he was elected the President of South Africa
- Michelangelo – 72 when he designed the dome of St. Peter’s Basilica in Rome
- Benjamin Franklin – 79 when he invented bifocals
- Frank Lloyd Wright – 91 when he finished his work on the Guggenheim Museum
- Dimitrion Yordanidis – 98 when he ran a marathon
- Ichijiro Araya – 100 when he climbed Mount Fuji
Age 3 to 100 and everything in between! Not too old nor too young to accomplish the unbelievable. Whether they were after holiness as St. Katharine referenced or not, there is no limit to what the sacred human life can accomplish!
I hope you seek God’s will with a pure heart. I hope you seek it without questions. I hope you do it just as He wills it because He wills it and for no other reason. And I hope you continue to seek it in a new way each morning. Your age may come with life event standards but my friends, God is outside of time so when He calls (and He has, is and will), I can guarantee you that nobody is expecting it.
Let us look to our ladies, St. Katharine Drexel and the Blessed Mother (and all the more who make up divine sisterhood), as faithful models of following God’s will to the extent that their actions forever altered the world. Yes, this surely includes contributing to all of humankind’s salvation…hi, Mary! Because that is how powerful God’s will is and that is how much he trusts in his daughters (and sons). The God who has a distinguished plan for you has not changed and never will. Age aside, go do God’s will and set the world on fire!
Ps. the image above is what I responded to Teagan with…I highly recommend it as a phone wallpaper 🙂