I'm my own man! I'm self-made, and I alone should determine my destiny! I will let nothing stand in the way of what I want. There is no other road to happiness!
At least that's what contemporary society would have us believe.
But the Christian viewpoint is much different. Not in the end - we were certainly created to be happy - but in the means. We were created to be happy with God - and God has an idea of what we need to do to attain that happiness with Him!
What that means, essentially, is that we can't be the ultimate self-determining men society calls us to be. We have to allow ourselves to be re-created by God for His purpose. Only in doing so will we be able to find the happiness which God has planned for us.
God never makes a mistake when he calls. It can be hard to fathom, but it's true: God will never call you into a vocation that is not the perfect fit for you. The Creator of the Universe never makes mistakes! The only rational response to God's will is total surrender.
The Blessed Mother knew this. She revealed her deep trust in God's will when she responded to the angel, "Be it done unto me according to your word." It was a moment of total surrender that changed the world forever.
Interestingly, when priests tell their vocation stories, the Blessed Mother almost always plays a role. Sometimes it's dramatic: "I prayed a novena to Mary and she sent me a sign." Most often, though, it's simple: "I started saying the rosary every day, and over time, my vocation became clearer." And throughout their priesthood, priests continue to rely on Mary as a comforting feminine presence, a true spiritual mother.
Mary always leads us to her Son. Imitate her complete trust, and you'll eventually be able to surrender your will completely to God. Who knows? Maybe he is calling you to be a priest, married to the Bride of Christ, the Church.
Sometimes we think that happiness comes naturally. In many ways, happiness should be our most natural life, but human brokenness can lead us astray. Let Mary guide you to the supernatural happiness that awaits those who are blessed to be called children of God.
Thank you for taking the time to consider your vocation.
If you think God may be calling you to serve Him in the ministry of the priesthood, please contact me.
You are always in my daily prayers as you listen and discern. God bless you.
Fr. Will Thompson