Monday, October 20, 2014

The Incredible Gentleness of God's Will

When we think about doing God's will, the images that come to mind are the extremes--St. Francis of Assisi who gave up all of his many worldly possessions, or the  Christian martyrs who gave up their lives, including 11 out of 12 apostles.  Or we worry that we will be ridiculed like the prophet Hosea or tested like Job. It's no wonder we  hesitate before offering to do only what God wills.

But God is very gentle with His creatures.

Today, I felt a strong pull to drop by our parish office. I chatted for a few moments with the single employee who had been left alone to cover for the day. From there, I was headed to the post office, and I offered to take the mail. She smiled with great relief, because she was going to have to take the mail herself after work. God wanted to give her a break, and He wanted to use me as His instrument.

Another time, I couldn't get it out of my head that I should walk up the street and visit an elderly neighbor. She was so happy to see me. She was moving to a retirement home and wanted to talk to someone not directly involved in the decision (her children) about her anxieties. God had called me to simply be there and listen.

There are so many saints who have been called to suffering, but if you read their stories, they were at a point in their spiritual life where they welcomed suffering to bring about greater good.

If we learn to listen to His voice, we can see many opportunities to do His will throughout the day, and most likely they won't involve torture or poverty.

He is the whisper, not the storm, and we are the voices and hands and feet that carry out His plan. It's an intricate plan with many small steps.

Don't be afraid of doing His will. He's a gentle God who will make it easy for us.

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