Saturday, March 27, 2010

Being Towards Destiny

"Whatever course you have chosen for yourself, it will not be a chore but an adventure if you bring to it a sense of the glory of striving, if your sights are set far above the merely secure and mediocre" (David Sarnoff). We need to bring the glory of striving to all we do, even to play. Living this way entails taking risks, which requires trust. This trust is not necessarily proven by whether or not we succeed or fail because failure, too, is a part of living. Setting my "sights far above the merely secure and mediocre" also requires me to live without preconceptions. Not having preconceptions is different from not having aspirations and desires for proximate ends. It means being open to the unexpected, to being surprised.

While there is an inherent glory to human endeavor, our striving needs an object, an end towards which it is all directed because no matter what we achieve in this life it falls short of what we really want, which is the life that is truly life. Otherwise, all our busyness only serves to distract our attention from what really matters. As Don Giussani teaches us, we must use everything as means to accomplish the end we desire, to arrive at destiny, which is nothing other than fully realizing the purpose for which we exist. So, while there is the glory of striving, there is also the glory for which we strive and the two, while distinct, are inextricably linked. The glory for which I strive is striven for in no other way than how I live each day of my life, which means letting each moment be for me truly an experience, not just so many random things that happen to me. It is precisely through our daily activities that Christ comes meet us, to make the events of our days encounters with Him, the One who doesn't merely show us our destiny, but who is our destiny, our beginning and our end. He who is Alpha and Omega.

Meum cum sim pulvis et cinis


  1. Deacon Bob YerhotMarch 27, 2010 at 7:03 AM

    Johnnes Metz in his book, Poverty of Spirit, speaks of the poverty of finiteness and provisionality. Unable to do justice to his thought, my understanding of his thesis is that in the midst of the "chronos" of daily life - the sequence of one moment after another- we need be open to the "kairos" of eternal time - moments at which our eternal destiny, God, breaks through our poverty. These moments are unexpected,and thwarted by preconception. Life as we know it generally forces us to get caught up in the repetitive acts necessary for daily functioning. The Christian challenge is to live with this "poverty" open to and directed toward the richness of the eternal "now".

  2. I agree and I like Metz, especially his book on the Emerging Church. As you mention, repetitve acts are unavoidable and the resistance we must undertake in the face of life is not become zombies. Any answer that does refer directly to Jesus Christ is inadequate. Even living the poverty you describe is not a matter of how I think about time. Being the Alpha and the Omega, it is about my relationship to Christ who is not an abstraction, but a person. The One who loves me and died for me. He knows my name and calls me by it. He knows everything about me, even the darkest reaches of my heart, where He longs to be present to bring light, and He still loves me. So, it is Him and Him alone who allows me "to live this way."

  3. Yes, how true! It is our relationship with Jesus Christ which gives meaning to our daily experiences, even those that can leave us feeling like zombies. He alone breaks into our poverty and divinizes it - this is the incarnation and our sharing in his Paschal Mystery.


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