Posted by: wordofthevine | February 6, 2019

Go Out Into the Deep: Follow Your God Given Passions!

One day, a title of a TED talk caught my eye. I’ve written about being inspired by talks on YouTube before but this one, “Don’t Follow Your Passions” caught me off guard. I have spent the last ten years encouraging others to recognize their spiritual gifts, to find holiness and meaning in life, by noticing the passion in their lives. I felt amazed that I was sitting there, a woman at mid life, listening to a twenty something expert telling me and his audience how to find meaning and purpose by ignoring my passions. He said things like: “When I was much younger…before I had life experience”… He talked with authority about his findings in exploring this topic for the last three years. I was skeptical and kind of resentful. I have seen a turn around especially within the Church in ignoring the wisdom forged through the decades and bringing in those in their twenties as the experts. We may feel desperate in trying to reach out to the Millennials so we turn to their peers for expert advice. Don’t get me wrong, I am the mother of some wonderful young adults. I often like to learn from them and respect them very much, not as experts but as other informed people with something to share.

What was Benjamin Todd getting to in encouraging us not to follow our passions. What he was really saying was, don’t be self focused. Consider what’s really important in life, for others. Find something that, yes draws your attention, but also makes an impact in the lives of others. Don’t remain on the surface of life but touch on what matters. For those of us who have been in the trenches trying to raise the next generation and impact our parishes and Churches to draw all into deeper relationship with God, isn’t this what we have been trying to share? Whether you feel like going to Mass or bringing God’s will for you into your decision making, you are wired with deep spiritual impulses within you. God is calling you and you won’t find fulfillment until you step in sync with these spiritual passions that are, by nature , focused on what’s really important in the world and in the lives of people. We, as parents, have spent considerable time trying to help our offspring to hook into their interests, maybe it’s football, Taekwondo, riding horses etc, not as an end itself for your life work, but as a way to learn about yourself, enjoy something but be able to move into what’s really important to God and to the world. Our Faith in God and involvement in church helps move us off of the surface of life to truly living for others. Our deeper passions are how God leads us to His will for us. ~ Mary

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