Discussion related to living as a Catholic in the single state of life. As long as a topic is being discussed from the perspective of a single Catholic then it will be on-topic.
Tobias and Sarah's story is from the Book of Tobit, and his journey is guided by Saint Raphael.
Learn More: Tobias & Sarah as led by Saint Raphael
AMEN! That is really beautiful Aimee! We just do the best we can. I have struggled with making God's Will black and white, as if He had a specific box He dropped me into and if I missed the signs I've screwed it all up. But the older I get, the more I understand that God's Will for me is to learn how to LOVE. And like you said, if I pray and make decisions based on being with Him that I am doing His will as I best understand it. He should have made us humans a heck of a lot smarter if there was one specific path for each of us that we had to figure out! So if we make our priority HIM, letting go of sin and learning how to LOVE, we will find our wills aligned more with His everyday. Happy Sunday!
Let's take for example the a father in his middle age decided to have a child from his second wife who's 20 years younger. And.their offspring was born autistic. Is this scenario what we call the will of God? For allowing the couples to get married and have a child?
Scentific studiess from Stanford Univ. reveal that the chances of having an autistic child results from the passing of weaker genes from the father to the child during pro creation.
Sin is an addiction, but do we consider having kids at a later stage in our lives sinful? Perhaps only God knows what the outcome of our actions are, since He is outside of time. But when he was inside of time in the Holy Land He forgave sin.
Arturo, your post reminded me of two things. First, my aunt and uncle had a late-life unexpected child named David who was born mentally challenged. I remember all the adults being so sad. David was my favorite cousin. He was so loving and forgiving. After my uncle died, my aunt became an invalid. She was able to stay in her home for many years (I’m talking 10+ years if my memory is right) because David was there to help her. David was a huge blessing to our family just as God made him.
Second, I am reminded of a Buddist story. There was a farmer in South East Asia whose mule broke his leg. The farmer’s neighbor came over and said, “That’s bad.” The farmer answered, “Maybe yes, maybe no.” Then the farmer started pulling the plow himself without the mule. The neighbor came over and said, “How wonderful that you are so strong that you can pull the plow.” The farmer responded, “Maybe yes, maybe no.” The farmer broke his leg before he got the field planted. The neighbor said to the farmer, “That is so bad.” The farmer replied, “Maybe yes, maybe no.” The farmer’s son came home from the university to help the farmer and the neighbor said, “That is so bad that your son had to leave the university but so good that he can help you.” The farmer replied, “maybe yes, maybe no.” The son got the field planted and broke his leg putting up the plow. The neighbor came over and said, “That is so bad.” The farmer replied, “Maybe yes, maybe no.” The government soldiers came by to conscript the young men of village and they didn’t want the father’s son because he had a broken leg. It seems that they were at the university just a few weeks before.
You are right, Arturo. God is the only one who knows the outcome of our actions. The challenge is to trust God. I must confess, patience and trust come hard to me, but I am working on it. Thank you for your interesting and thought provoking post.
I think we find God's will in the choosing, not in the choice.
A prayerful decision, attempting to follow God's will, does follow God's will, no matter what the choice is.
I have found it helpful to offer up all my decisions and actions to God, to make them holy and do with them as He might.
(I keep wanting to say more... each paragraph there was, at one point, three times as long and filled with examples, adminitions, "insights", and so on. And editing them brings each down to the size of an aphorism. Maybe that's good; maybe it means I'm beingsimplistic.)
Chris, your post reminded me of this prayer:
Thomas Merton's Prayer:
My Lord God, I have no idea where I am going.
I do not see the road ahead of me. I cannot know for certain where it
Nor do I really know myself, and the fact that I think I am
following your will does not mean that I am actually doing so.
But I believe that the desire to please you does in fact please you and I hope that I
have that desire in all that I am doing.
And I know that if I do this, you will lead me by the right road although I may know nothing about it.
Therefore will I trust you always though I may seem to be lost and in
the shadow of death, I will not fear, for you are ever with me and you will
never leave me to face my perils alone.
Thank you both. And Thomas Merton! And the book 'the Holy Will of God' written for religious but pertinent to all.
I have noticed many statements here starting with the words "I think", And I can hear my kids saying "me thinks me thinks too much"
I took one look at the young man across the dance floor and said to his sister " who is that?", and, "I'm going to dance with him" I was a shy young woman but I knew what I saw when I was looking at him and got over my shyness because my heart called.
We were both imature and went separate ways, - I married the wrong man and divorced, he stopped drinking -
and then came back together later after "choices" and God's Life made good had helped us to grow. We were ecstatically happily married for many years through thick and thin.
Yes, believe it or not, there are 'mates' that God would prefer we be with and there is a saying that you will know it when you hear 'the lion roar'. (not the MGM lion, ha ha)
God has a way of speaking to us and we are to learn to listen. He can speak in the quiet or in the middle of the chaos - I know, single mom of 4 here -
BUT, He usually speaks the language of love to our heart before our mind, so calm the mind in order to hear with the heart.
Oh Holy Spirit, Beloved of our souls, we adore Thee.
Enlighten us, guide us, strengthen us, console us.
Tell us what we should do, give us your orders.
We promise to submit to all that you desire of us
and to accept all that you permit to happen to us,
Only show us Thy will,
please show us Thy will.
In my short time on CM, I have read a number of fora posts including a reference to "God's will." That you must be open to "God's will" in a match so you need to consider persons who perhaps do not have all the qualities you desire. Yet at the same time there have been posts stating that it's really up to you in regard to your qualifications regarding age, appearance, life experience. This seems to be doublespeak to me.
I have a much broader perspective now on God's will and discernment than I used to. I really think God's will is much more dynamic that it is often made out to be - and must be if we believe in human freedom. The fact is, all of us thwart God's will every day - it's called sin. So if we thwart God's will in little ways each day, what makes us think we're going to get it right in big decisions? I think God's will is that we learn how to LOVE during our time here on earth, and because we often screw up this plan for a good portion of our lives, He continues to place new ways to teach us to love in our path and hopefully we will embrace some of these and learn a little more about love during this journey called life.
I don't assume that we'll get it figured out here in this CM thread, since confusion over this was one of the reasons the whole Protestant Reformation happened, but maybe we can all get a fuller understanding for ourselves.
So what's your perspective on God's will?
"When asking the Lord to reveal His will, we shouldn't expect instant answers. The discipline of waiting builds character, and besides, rushing the process may lead to a path that misses Gods best. Take the time to seek Jesus plan for your life, remembering He'll provide all you need to follow Him." ~ Dr. Charles Stanley
Peace to all
When you go to a book store you find volumes of books on how to think positively. You NEVER find a book on how to think negatively. Negativeness is part of our DNA. I happen to believe it is part of Original Sin, but that is a subject covered later.
If you spend ALL your time praying and NONE of your time acting, you are using God as a cop out. I can fully understand praying for guidance in big decisions, but a first date? If I was meeting someone or going out on a first date, I'd pray that this would be God's blessing and if not revealed quickly. I don't believe God wants us to spend 10 weeks praying over a first date.
I can underdstand praying over continuing a relationship, marriage, large business decisions, but would your pray over buying a loaf a bread? I supose you could, but God gave us intelligence too and we should use it in making decisions.
I felt she was using taking care of their family as an excuse to hide from life. I know, because I've done it.
It is my choice not to chose someone for a relationship 2,000 miles away. Not because we wouldn't be a match, but how many times have you heard someone going through a divorce that the person changed after marriage? Now if living in the same town someone could hide their true nature, how much easier is it miles away? I have chosen to use the intelligecne God gave me to make decisions. I pray that I use it wisely.
I am reminded of a homily that a priest had and actually heard it told as a joke previously:
A man lived in a flood zone and heard that there was a hurricane coming, but stayed in his house praying believed that God would save him.
When the water was lapping at his house's foundation the National Guard came by in a large truck and tried to remove him, but he said he was praying and God would save him.
When the house began to flood he crawled up on the roof and a boat came by trying to rescue him, but he said he was praying and that God would save him.
Finally the water floated the house away with him on top. A helicopter came by and tried to rescue him again, but he said he was praying and God would save him.
Eventually, the man died and went to heaven. When presented before God's throne the man complained to God, I prayed that you would save me but you didn't. God replied, "I gave you 4 chances and sent you three angels to rescue you, but you refused to act."
These are very good points Bernie! Thank you!