The Calling

My Journey to the Hermit Life

“You and I ought not to die before we have explained ourselves to each other.” – John Adams, to Thomas Jefferson, 1813

“I never explain anything!” – Mary Poppins

I don’t remember a voice
On a dark, lonesome road
When I started this journey so long ago
I was only just trying to outrun the noise
There was never a question of having a choice

– Mary-Chapin Carpenter, The Calling

Those first two quotes, even though they seem to be saying opposing things about explanation, both express something true about our experience of faith in general, and about being called by God in particular. On the one hand, we feel a desire to express our experience of faith whenever God blesses us in some way. Recall how the two disciples at Emmaus immediately return to Jerusalem after recognizing the Risen Lord in their midst, so that they can tell the others what they just encountered, and hear from the others their experiences of the Risen Lord as well. Faith seeks to be shared, and yes, explained in some fashion.

Mary Poppins has a point, however. There is something about faith that eludes explanation. Whatever we may say about it – as true as it may be – seems so inadequate compared to what we have been given in Christ. Moreover, not everyone will understand our explanation, no matter how carefully we word it. God always goes beyond our words. To those who understand, no explanation is necessary. To those who do not, no explanation is adequate. Continue reading “The Calling”

Follow Me

100_0302“The lonely and lost are just waiting to hear; Any moment their purpose will be perfectly clear.” – Mary-Chapin Carpenter, The Calling

A happy St. Andrew’s Day to all of you of Scottish descent!

In today’s Gospel reading, we are presented with the call of the first disciples according to St. Matthew. In this account, Jesus simply appears, calls out to Andrew and Peter, then James and John, and they immediately leave everything and follow Him. Immediately, we ask? What was it that drew these fishermen so quickly, so readily to Jesus? Continue reading “Follow Me”