As I prepared my morning breakfast, the inspiration for this blog presented itself on a package of muffins. I had an “aha” moment at seeing these words, “wake up to what’s possible,” in plain view for my reflection. Messages can surround us and appear before us waiting to be noticed.
“Wake up” is the first message I see in the phrase on this package. For many of us, waking up can be hard to do, both physically and spiritually. We like to hit the snooze button and enjoy a few extra minutes of slumber before we are ready to meet a new day. Inside every new day is an opportunity to wake up to where and how God presents God’s presence in everything we do and are about.
How do we practice waking up? We can start with a morning ritual of prayer and silence to awaken our minds and our hearts to be mindful of God’s presence as we invite God into the nook and crannies of our lives. As we eat our morning breakfast and possibly share a meal with others, we can be alert to how we and others are instruments of God’s grace, simply with a smile, a hug, or a greeting as a tangible sign of presence. These simple gestures can reveal God’s way of reaching out to us, affirming us and teaching us to be attentive to the ways God is present to us.
Sometimes waking up can be a startling or unpleasant awakening, where we are stretched or called to see life differently, both our own life and the life of others. How often have we been challenged to recognize that our ways, our views, are not the only ones out there? We might ask, “What is God teaching me in this moment?” or “How is God calling me to be present in this moment?” These wake-up questions invite us to focus on how God is nudging us into greater awareness of who God wants us to be and where God is for us. As we reflect on these questions, more questions may emerge. Am I open to God’s desire for me? Am I open to God’s call in my life? Am I willing to give my life over to God’s control? How can I trust in God? Or, in moments of despair, loss, or hurt, we may ask, “Where is God in this moment?” and the answer will be waiting to be awakened within our soul.
Waking up is certainly a lifelong spiritual journey of seeking to see, hear, and witness how God reveals God’s faithful presence. We need each other to help us see more clearly when we are blind to God’s ways. We need each other to help us listen to how God is present to us when we feel God is silent. We need each other to remind us that we are not alone and that if we are lonely, to trust that God is always a breath and heartbeat within us, loving us. God is always waking us up and calling us to see and hear the path to which we are being called to follow.
The second message on this package invites the question, “what’s possible?” Faith has been my teacher in viewing and seeing what’s possible. Faced with questions about how I could bear a trial or what to do about a situation, faith and prayer have been my constant friends, making the seemingly impossible possible. Jesus, himself, conveys that it is our faith that enables and empowers us to live a life of possibility, as the Gospel of Matthew tells us “if you have faith the size of a mustard seed, nothing shall be impossible for you.” (Matthew 17:20) We hear also in this same gospel, the message that “with God all things are possible.” (Matthew 19:26)
Or another way to frame our understanding of seeing what’s possible is to embrace the wisdom of the young poet, Amanda Gorman, as she asserts that “there is always light, if only we’re brave enough to see it. If only we are brave enough to be it.” And with all that seems impossible in our world today, Amanda also inspires us to “lift our gazes not to what stands between us but what stands before us.” May it be so.
So, I invite you and me to wake up to what is possible, knowing that with God everything is possible.
Is God possibly calling you to consider living as a religious sister? If so, contact us and be awakened to a life of rich possibilities.