It may come as a surprise to some but I am struggling with my vocation. I love my life, yet the Lord seems to be adding extra requirements to my vocation as a hermit. Does this threaten my sense of security? Oh yeah! In a big way. In fact, it’s tormented me for months now. Until a couple of days ago when I realized that it hardly mattered what I felt should happen in my life; the need to take vows, or to obtain a certain certification, all that mattered was that I do God’s will.
A danger that many of us fall into is thinking that when God gives us vocation it is ours to control–it isn’t. It is God’s to control. Paraphrasing Jesus: “Don’t worry about what you’re going to eat or what you’re going to wear, don’t you think God already knows this?” Well duh! The passage just paraphrased I have known all my life, yet only yesterday when I read it again did it dawn on me that all I have to do is seek God’s will and do it. What that means is not worry about am I doing it right? Am I on the right path? Should I do this, should I do that? No, none of that. Whatever God requires, God will make abundantly clear. If I am to stay in hermitage, then God will see to that. If I am to take on some exterior ministry that is fed by hermitage, then God will see to that also. There is a phrase from Milton that says it all, “they serve too who stand and wait.” That is what I do: stand and wait.
Standing and waiting is very hard to do for us humans. We don’t like to wait. “Onward,” is the battle cry. “We shall fill the breach with our English dead,” wrote Shakespeare. “Charge!” Not one of those is appropriate for any life that centers on God, and certainly not for a hermit. God never leaves us in our comfort zone. God is always challenging us to one more thing, one more purification of self-will, one more act of love towards another, one more forgiveness, one more moment of trust, one more moment of waiting.
I do not like to wait. Yet, wait is exactly what I must do. “If it should tarry, wait for it, for it will surely come.” Habbakuk 2:3b,4. There isn’t a statute of limitations on this waiting, just an order to wait.
What’s the point of this entry? I give up worrying about should I do this, or should I do that. Instead, “I will wait, Lord, for you to act. Do with me what you will.”