Thursday, August 30, 2012

“What do You want of me?” Part I of IV

     Ever since I first saw “Teresita,” an original play written about Teresa of Avila and read the poem “In the Hands of God” by the renowned saint and Doctor of the Church, I have begun framing my discernment around that same question repeated in her poem: “What do You want of me?” 

Then and Now

     Spending time back at the cottage where Kevin and I first met over sixteen years ago has raised a lot of questions for me, for both of us actually.  Obviously our lives have changed quite a bit since we first met at the cottage when my mom and sisters rented the other half of the cottage from where Kevin lived with his dad, the real Harry Potter. 
     Births, Baptisms, anniversaries, deaths, memories, and recent life events have reminded us of these occurrences and made us slow down and take stock.  In many ways, Kevin and I aren’t where we thought or hoped we’d be by this time in our lives, in our marriage, in our families, our careers, though we have grown considerably since we first met in ways only the Lord could have brought about.
     When looking around and seeing others who are raising children, buying and fixing up their houses, getting a promotion at work, taking the next step towards their religious vocation, and or those who are working hard towards some other admirable goal the Lord has placed on their hearts, Kevin and I have sometimes wondered what’s next for us .  Where do we fit into all of this?  Are we mostly who and where God wants us to be?  Our visions for the future were so different when we started out, but some of the most fervent prayers and deepest passions God placed in us have come to pass. 

 God’s timing, not ours

     Despite practically every sort of opposition possible, Kevin and I through the grace of God have remained a couple since I was in high school.  We entered into the gift, covenant, and sacrament of marriage nearly eight years ago (September 4, 2004), and have weathered many storms together since then.  Kevin has lost both of his parents.  I’ve lost my father.  We’ve faced extremely difficult health, financial, spiritual, and emotional challenges that have tested us in ways we never anticipated.    
     What I begged for the hardest while we were still dating, for Kevin to return to the faith in which he was raised and have a direct relationship with the Lord, God has granted in truly miraculous ways that continue to amaze and astound me. 
     We have a deep love and appreciation for faith, family, and friends.  We take great joy in being around children.  We try to use the resources and talents we’ve been given to help others.  We still enjoy LAUGHING TOGETHER! 
     Our lives are not what we thought they would be, but perhaps (we hope) they are closer to what God wants them to be. 

Our prayer: Lord, help us to turn to You for guidance, insight, and inspiration as to whom You want us to be, what You would like us to do, where, how, with and for whom.  Your plan for us as individuals and as a married couple is so much greater, more loving, and beautiful than anything we could come up with on our own.  The prayer you put in my heart many years ago still seems like the perfect one to pray: Plant Your will in our hearts and make it our deepest desire and most fervent longing. 
     Here are the other three parts of this reflection on our ongoing discernment as a couple: Part II, Part III, Part IV.
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