Catholic Soup is a food for thought blog based website designed to provide Catholic insight through personal experience.

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Practice Patience

For the past couple days, I have slowly been realizing that my own patience is one of those virtues that is needed and I can't strive to be better without it. Patience, especially for me is hard, I struggle with inconsistency in my patience. I can tell you that I am not a very patient person, especially when I see something I want. There is inconsistency there because some days I am pretty patient other days, not so much. I get ahead of myself, and want things done, I'm impatient thinking about a couple things like my future, or the days that I am in, and even school now.  I think a big-part of our Christian lives has to do with waiting. Not necessarily waiting on things to happen on their own, but waiting and being patient in our fast-paced lives. When I think about it, we live today in a world that is supplying to our needs, we can get just about anything if we really want to. For example, if we want food, we eat, if we want drink, we drink. The norm is if you want something you can get it. Today with patience I think it applies the same; If we want something, we're so used to having those things placed right in front of us really fast. When we are patient towards receiving, all of a sudden its different for us. Now we have to wait for any sort of delay to pass, wait for things to develop and train our minds to really slow down and get used to the act of waiting itself. The joy is that God who is the cause of all things even our choices allows for us to practice this patience of our own so we can enjoy something even greater in the end. In life, our patience is tested everyday. Last night for me, it was in the McDonald's drive-thru line. Maybe for you its something else, the experience is that in our patience God molds our minds and prepares our soul to be still and quiet to focus on him. In our delay, God prepares us and stills us to experience a far greater joy in the end. We hear in Proverbs that "Patience brings peace." This is true in our lives, for the fisherman, patience is everything and has to be applied on the job, if it ain't, then he is looking at a hard day ahead of him. I have to remind myself constantly that I'm not here on my own time, If we did what we wanted when we wanted all the time then what room do we have for that growth of peace and stillness that we need to experience Christ? So far I have learned that Patience is not only training but it helps us also learn to submit ourselves to the will of the Father and not our own. When we are patient, the outward sign is that we are placing ourselves at the foot of the cross and we are allowing the one true God to do with us according to His will. This is the true meaning of patience.
I remember the scripture from Psalm 46:10
"Be still and know that I am God"

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Maryknoll Discernment Retreat

A couple years ago, one of the monks here at school had mentioned me about the Mary-knoll Society. He said they do a ton of missionary work and you should check it out. Yeah, I never checked it out. Something happened, two years later that thought of checking it out suddenly came into my head again and there I was looking at some Maryknoll newsletters that I had ordered. It's funny how God works in our lives, especially when your discerning. You think your going right but somehow by the grace of God you turn left. Anyway, after I had contacted Maryknoll I found out they were running a retreat in Los Altos, CA about an hour train ride south from San Francisco. I called the priest in charge to see if I can make it, this was about a week before the actual retreat. He called me back the next day saying they would love for me to come in by the expense of the team. Two days later I got an email confirmation of my flight itinerary. By the time I knew it I was on a plane flying westbound over the Arizona Desert thinking to myself "how did I even do this?" It happened so fast, I had prayed a lot prior before I found out I was going and during the weekend of the retreat as well. When I got to the Society house, which was a retirement home for retired missionaries, I couldn't believe how beautiful the place was. It was like I was captivated by the environment and even more, captivated by the love and attention that God had towards me. A tender care to bring me across the country and then place me in home of servants. During the panels, we talked with the priests and the brothers who had helped in some type of missionary work overseas. They all had been out of the country for 30+ years helping those people who need it the most. It was like talking to a third-class relic. The whole thing felt good and I felt more and more comfortable the longer I was there. As follow up I was invited by Maryknoll for a mission trip to Guatemala in January...