Sunday, November 22, 2009
I am too busy. This hit me today like a truck, and i sit here wondering how it could have taken me so long to realize this. Somehow this semester i have led myself to believe that i have no choice but to be as busy as i am. I have no choice but to constantly be stressed out, overworked, exhausted, and i have no choice but to make myself another pot of coffee... i know it's midnight, but i HAVE to study for at least two more hours. I have come to blame all of my weaknesses on the fact that I'm tired, i have a test, or a paper, or I'm too stressed out about my future to be calm. Not only is this completely unnecessary, it has led to a lack of peace and joy in my life that i realize now affects much much more than i thought it did, or could. Tonight i attended a seminar based on cultivating a deeper interior life. One of the first things that was discussed was the danger of becoming too busy. I remember, and i may be saying this wrong, one of the leaders saying that being too busy is wearing Satan's yoke. It's clear to me that this is the yoke I've been wearing this semester, not the one that is light, and easy, and belongs to Christ. It isn't that the things I busy myself with aren't good. Tonight, as I was giving thanks to God during my time in meditation, it occurred to me for the first time in a long time how thankful i am to be here at Benedictine, receiving such a good education. But when good things are done at the expense of a real, authentic relationship with Christ, they become something less than what they are. It's good for me to get good grades, and to work hard, and to involve myself in academic pursuits, but what is the stress I've brought upon myself costing me? What is the stress that I've built up over my future costing me? I have become so deeply worried over what I'm going to do with the rest of my life, and I say all the time that I'm just waiting for God to let me know His plans, but it occurs to me now that I haven't been listening. I am always doing, instead of just being. This morning when i was doing my meditation in front of the blessed sacrament, i finished and found myself wondering what i was going to do next. I had brought my rosary with me, and i kept thinking...i should really pray a rosary, because it's been a few days. But something held me back. In a moment that i truly chose to listen, i heard Christ whisper to my heart to stop, and be okay with simply spending time with Him. We don't need to always be doing something...there doesn't always need to be a "next order of business", especially when we find ourselves sitting in His presence. When we spend our time with Him in this way, where is there room for Him to work? It's true that God's power can do anything in our weakness, and in our distractions in prayer, and of course if i had decided to pray my rosary, He would have blessed it, and there is no doubt that i am in great need of Our Lady's intercession. But, in that moment i knew that His desire was for me to be present with Him...why would i do anything to thwart the work He wanted to do in me? I pray and beg for peace and joy, but usually just as He is about to grant me these fruits of His Spirit, I find a new distraction, or i move on to something else. I need to learn to wait on the Lord, in silence, knowing that it is in the very depths of my Heart that I will meet Him in prayer. I need to eat, and sleep, and study, and spend time with people, and there is a certain amount of busyness in my life right now that is unavoidable. But it boils down to this question: What is my focus? What am i making my first priority? It will be in these moments spent with Him in silence that I will be able to find the peace, and the strength to face things head on, and maintain my joy through all of it.