Last Updated: Friday - 09/24/2010
Week of January 12, 2004
Look for God's hand in life's interruptions
By FR. RON ROLHEISER, omi
We must also look for the hand of God in our interruptions.
Wilson agrees and suggests that it was precisely because of these interruptions, which kept Lewis' feet squarely on the ground, that Lewis was able to have such empathic insights into the everyday human condition.
As these examples illustrate, what initially is experienced as an unwanted interruption can, in the end, be our real agenda.
Of course, this isn't always true. Our lives are not meant to be left entirely to circumstance. We're meant to make choices, hard choices at times, to actively shape our own destiny. It can be unhealthy to simply accept whatever happens. We have God-given dreams and talents and must, in the name of the God who gave them to us, fight for our agenda.
However, we must also look for the hand of God in our interruptions. These often appear as a conspiracy of accidents through which God guides and tutors us.
If we were totally in control of our own agendas, if we could simply plan and execute our lives according to our own dreams with no unwanted demands, I fear many of us would, slowly and subtly, become selfish.
Baptism means derailment. Christ baptizes Peter on the rock when he tells him: "Your life is now no longer your own. Before you made a profession of love, you fastened your belt and walked wherever you liked. Now, others will put a belt around you and take you where you would rather not go."
To submit to love is to be baptized, namely, to let our lives be forever interrupted. To not let our lives be interrupted is to say "no" to love.
C.S. Lewis once said that we'll spend most of eternity thanking God for those prayers he didn't answer. I suspect we'll also spend a good part of eternity thanking God for those interruptions that derailed our plans but baptized us into life and love in a way we could never have ourselves planned or accomplished. We do not live by accomplishment alone and sometimes what's best for us can only be learned conscriptively.
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