I am trying to remain enthusiastic about what God is calling me to do, and I have to admit that I have been finding it difficult lately. I am being asked to love for Love's sake and for not for other reasons, and I am struggling to do that. In my life, what has looked like the love of God and what has been uplifting and generally successful have coincided for the most part. It has therefore been easy to keep charging along, thinking that I am doing it for the love of God.
Right now, I cannot really be enthusiastic about the splendor of the Church. Oh, she is splendid all right, but she is hiding it well these days! I cannot by "hyped up" about the rip roaring quantitative success of Vanderbilt Catholic. We ended the year with a less than stellar attendance and participation in the last full weekend of Masses for this school year. Personally, I just don't see the fruits of what I do; but I do see the things that I mess up. This is, of course, totally missing the point; but it is what I feel these days. It only gets worse when one looks at the larger world and realizes that we are being led by people who are not dealing with the crises of our times. And I see the sadness and difficulty of this world, from flooding to aging.
All of these things are true. And none of them have any thing to do with the most important things. I know the love of God for the world and for me. I am being asked to love that Love for His own sake and not for the goodies that He has so generously given me. (And in reality, there still are plenty of goodies!) This is really no big deal. It is an early step in spiritual development. I do have to say that it is a struggle for me at this time.
And here we are ending up another year. The students are doing such a good job at trying to live the Kingdom of God here at Vanderbilt, not the easiest place in the world to live it. I was counseling a student last night about whether to work in a parish youth program or in the music business. I advised the music business because Jesus wants to be there and generally isn't. The fact that it will be hard is beside the point. OK -- I get the message, Lord!