Over the next few weeks, one of our parishioners, Frank Norton, will be sharing his life journey as a Catholic: how his faith has developed and grown over the years, how he lives out this faith on a daily basis, and lessons learned along the way. Please join us in following this series!
Have you ever, at one time or another, believed you can guarantee desired life outcomes if you just do the “good planning.” As they say these days, “how did that go for you?" I spent a lot of years marching to that drummer. The best grade I ever got was “mixed results.” Fortunately, along the way a very close friend – a Jew who converted himself to Christianity at a low point in his career – opened my ears to the “whisper of God’s voice.” His conversion was a “listening for the whisper moment.” And, with a lot of funny tricks and irony over a couple of years, he improved my spiritual hearing. First result – I opened up to a new awareness of being a full-time Roman Catholic.
Here’s what my friend helped change for me:
- I start every new day with GRATITUDE to God for everyone – family, friends, strangers – and everything in my life – the Sacraments, enjoyable work, nature, improved wisdom in making choices and even for the tough moments of difficult outcomes.
- Now, I pour my most important desired life outcomes through a spiritual filter. Not all of MY possible choices make it through.
- With improved spiritual hearing, Jesus and HIS VALUES have a lot more influence in my daily life.
- I’m not the most important person in the room. I can learn from all others, if I listen.
- It’s more important to brag about the good in others than to be an expert on what’s wrong with them.
- I don’t need to be first in traffic. I now realize that driving isn’t a competition. So, letting others go first takes a lot of pressure off me.
- It’s easier now to recognize when others are in need and help them as best I can.
- If I help someone, I don’t need thanks or praise. My payoff is the treasure of their friendship. I keep in mind that it is really Jesus helping me help them.
- My unconditional love and understanding that, Jesus is part of human nature. can help all others –– even those society calls “difficult to deal with people.”
- My Christ-centered Roman Catholicism is now my real 24/7 identity.
- Work is what I can do to help pay the bills, but God is my boss and my purpose is to evangelize and bring others to Him no matter what I’m doing.
I’m a lot happier now that I know who I am – a Christ-centered Roman Catholic.