Thursday, February 16, 2006

se hace camino al andar, or through the roof

Recently I've found myself completely amazed by the stories of the saints, not only because of the things they did, but because of the amazing diversity of their responses to God's call in their lives. As C.S. Lewis wrote, "How monotonously alike all the great tyrants and conquerors have been: how gloriously different are the saints!"

Each of them responded to the same call, but from Joseph, who was rather the strong, silent type, to Joan of Arc, peasant girl and warrior, to Gianna Beretta Molla, physician, avid skier, and mother of four who gave her life for her child, each response was entirely unique. This reminds me that on the one hand, no matter what my struggles are, I can turn to the stories and writings of the saints for inspiration - they have been in the same place as me and remained faithful to the Lord. On the other hand, no matter how much inspiration I may draw from these saints, the path that I will walk in life is uniquely mine.

Caminante, son tus huellas
el camino, y nada más;
caminante, no hay camino,
se hace camino al andar.
Al andar se hace camino,
y al volver la vista atrás
se ve la senda que nunca
se ha de volver a pisar.
Caminante, no hay camino,
sino estelas en la mar.
~Antonio Machado

Wanderer, it is your tracks
which are the road, and nothing else.
Wanderer, there is no road,
walking makes the road.
By walking, the road is made,
and when glancing back
you contemplate the trail
which you will trample no more.
Wanderer, there is no road,
only the wakes on the sea.

~Translation: Roger Lapointe

No one has ever walked this road to holiness. My own footsteps alone will make the path. It is not that I am without a guide; Christ himself is my way, but no one has gone this way before, and I do not now where my path will lead. In this is the beauty and majesty of God: that the same Lord who said "I am the way, the truth, and the life" has a love so wide and so deep that it encompasses a unique path for each one of us. Some are called from the top of a tree, others are dropped through the roof. I am called from where I am now to walk with the Lord. With Him as my companion, I do not need to look so hard for the trail ahead to see where it will lead. He will guide me down the path that he has for me, and upon looking back, I will find that the path he led me down was the best one for me. I pray only that the Lord will help me walk this path to holiness with joy.

1 comment:

Gary Wood said...

Beautiful post.