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Holiness

Posted: December 04, 2014

It is a call, a desire and an invitation. 

It is something that lies within each one of us. It is a sacred gift given to us from God and our greatest inheritance. And, yet ironically most of us do not realize that we have been blessed with this gift.

We may spend our lives searching for things to make us feel whole, beloved and enough. We may seek success, wealth or seek the recognition of our peers. Yet, we may continue to feel a strong desire for something else. What we may not realize is that our worldly achievements, while impressive, is not our only call. Each one of us has a greater destiny.

It is the path of holiness. God calls us to live a sacred, holy life in the service of others. This does not mean that we cast aside our responsibilities to our families in the pursuit of holiness.  We are called to manifest goodness, and grace in our lives. We are also called to do, “soul work.”

For some of us, we will make a big impact and change the course of history. We may devote our lives to a great cause. For some, our contributions may seem smaller by comparison. We may spend our time focused on our family, church, school and neighborhood. We may not receive recognition for our contributions but this does not diminish their importance. 

There is nothing small about the work of God. All acts of courage and love make an impact. The call is not limited to a few. It is open to all of us. Each one of us has gifts and talents that can be used to heal what is broken in the world. This heals us too. Change may be slow and difficult to measure, but over time, our efforts are felt by those with whom we live and work.
Transformation is a new beginning. It gives us clarity, energy and joy.

Sometimes holiness may seem lofty and beyond our reach. To some, it may seem like an outdated idea. And yet, when we experience goodness, we feel its power. When we encounter someone doing holy work, we feel it.

Some of us may resist the idea because we feel that we are not worthy or that someone else who is more qualified is called. Based on our past mistakes or choices, we may feel that God cannot use us. Or we may feel it is too late to change. The opposite is true. God can transform our weaknesses into strength. He meets us where we are and loves us in spite of ourselves. 
We are called to enter into the expansive and spacious heart of God. There is no distance that is too great… When we accept that God has a divine plan for our lives, we can relax, because we do not have to figure everything out ourselves. It does not mean that we no longer experience fear or doubt. 

The invitation to live a holy life is a sacred call to each one of us. We are asked to make peace with the uncertainty and to lean into our faith.  The good news is that we no longer need to completely rely on ourselves.

This is a difficult transition for most of us. Even if we have faith, this leap may feel like falling off a cliff without a harness. But, an amazing thing happens when we stop using our own will. You will no longer feel comfortable with the way you have always done things in the past. The holy life does come at a price. You may feel pulled in new directions.

A remarkable woman I know has embraced a new chapter in her life like a courageous pioneer. She has raised a beautiful family. Now she is doing inner city ministry, hospice and tutoring refugees. She is delighted by this unexpected new chapter in her life.

When we have discussed her new passions, she has said there was nothing in her previous life that would explain this pull, she just trusted that it is right and that this is how she is being called to serve. She is an inspiration. This is the God of surprises…

When you enter this space, you will know…You will feel more love for everyone you encounter. You will feel a greater capacity for joy, compassion and forgiveness. You will feel hope and peace. This is the work of the Holy Spirit. When you are living in this way, your life will become easier even if there is no significant change in your material circumstances. 

This season, take the time to make space for this call to holiness… It is one invitation you will not regret!

--Maura Schnorbach