In a quiet moment I noticed a book on hiking (he was a hiking nut) that had this title "No shortcuts to the top!" I couldn't help but feel being tugged by this title, almost on a daily basis. It brought memories of my youth where it seemed to be the thing to find a shortcut, to save some time. This process almost always brought this sense of satisfaction accomplished. I felt proud feeling that wow, I was able to do this in less time, finding a way around something.
Two nights ago we were having an RCIA information night and the doors are wide open. Two people came in looking for information on the primary election that was being held upstairs in our Church Hall. They having found they were in the wrong hall, asked this question....."Is there a shortcut to getting to the top floor?"
Looking back on my journey of faith, I've noticed many times that I sought the shortcut, a faster way of getting to the top floor without extending myself, or putting in greater effort.
Once again there is the dilemma I'm working on. After ordination I really thought I've read all I need to and I've grown as much as I possibly could. How wrong was I! Jesus has been tugging at me to move forward, to work harder, to pray more, and avoid the shortcuts that human nature is inclined to seek.
So now you maybe asking what I'm doing to avoid the shortcuts and excuses that I've used in the past. I started to pray the rosary daily, and I've grown so much that I've gotten my wife and I to do it together to pray for our children who really need the prayers, two a day now. I've also encouraged a young lady to pray the rosary, and she has procrastinated so I've found a book to help her out with praying the rosary.
The rosary and meditating on the mysteries that are designed for Deacons is changing my life. Yes, another life changing experience, go figure. We are all destined for many life changing events, all we need to do is pray.
Yesterday I preached at daily Mass and the inspiration for my homily was....yes meditating on the mysteries was an epiphany that inspired me to share that joy with my parishioners. Yesterday was the feast of the Exultation of the Cross and I shared with them that two things stood out. That at the Elevation of the Host by our Priest is also that moment where we are at the Intersection of Heaven and Earth...we are there at Mount Calvary at that very moment and that the Cross is the fulfillment of the Eucharist. The Passover, The Last Supper and the Crucifixion is one moment of the Eucharist and we are there. NO shortcuts, we are truly there.
Pray the rosary, encourage others to pray the rosary. Find a way, make it happen, because after all ......There are no shortcuts to the top!