When I first encountered the Our Father’s Prayer in a convent school, its true meaning eluded me. We recited it as part of our National Pledge, but its depth remained hidden. Only during my RCIA journey was the veil lifted, and I grasped why Jesus taught His disciples how to pray to our Father. “Your Will Be Done, on earth as it is in heaven.”
An altercation unfolded between Peter and Jesus in this Sunday’s Gospel. Jesus spoke about his fate, and Peter rebuked it. In response, Jesus called Peter Satan, urging him to stand behind Him, as Peter’s words aligned with man’s way, not God’s way.
“The Struggle Between My Will and God’s Will.” When I enrolled in RCIA in October last year, I carried a secret list—a compilation of what I desired to do versus what I wished to avoid. However, after nearly a year, this list transformed. It contrasted what I no longer desired to do and what I now wholeheartedly embrace. Allow me to share a few examples:
I once shied away from sharing my faith and not even considering evangelisation. However, I am now eager to share my encounters and experiences with Jesus among my friends and family. The more I open up to share, the greater the joy and adrenaline I experience.
Reading or even touching the Bible used to be an activity I avoided. However, my perspective has shifted, and I now find immense pleasure in exploring the depths of that sacred library. Its pages have become more captivating than any fictional love or horror novel. I frequently quote scriptures to my friends when they are sad, angry, or caught up in gossip. Through these scriptural references, I can express myself in a way that resonates with them, causing them to pause and reflect.
Joining a ministry was never a desire of mine. Yet, I now actively participate in a ministry and eagerly anticipate the opportunity to contribute my thoughts and reflections each week. I never anticipated discovering my writing ability, especially considering my past failure in the O-Level English examinations 28 years ago.
I was once a night owl, but my daily routine has transformed due to my son’s early school bus schedule. I now attend the morning Eucharistic Celebrations daily, so my day’s schedule has transformed, making me an early bird.
It is truly a miraculous journey, witnessing how God has transformed every aspect of my life. Reflecting upon where I began, I am surprised at how far I have travelled. However, it has been a challenging path. There have been numerous instances when I felt troubled and exhausted, contemplating the temptation of reverting to my old ways. Additionally, my faith has led me to lose some of my closest friends as our values and beliefs have diverged.
During my journey, overwhelming guilt engulfed me, leading me to blame myself for everything and perceive every action as inherently wrong. It got me thinking, whoever claimed that this faith journey would be smooth and easy was mistaken. Yet, the true treasures lie in Heaven. I have broken down multiple times in various situations, questioning why God called me and why I made life so arduous for myself.
But, as always, He worked in miraculous ways. Along the way, I encountered incredible brothers and sisters from my parish community who offered unwavering support and prayed for me. Even my husband, who experienced a miraculous conversion, became a source of comfort and spoke about the Lord. These individuals, angels or living saints, helped me persevere, and as a result, I am stronger and closer to God than ever before.
As Catholics, we are privileged in our experiences of suffering. We are called to share this suffering with our loved ones, friends, and everyone, particularly those who struggle alone and battling depression, addiction, and other afflictions. Jesus does not promise a life devoid of pain or suffering, but He reveals that there is meaning in our suffering when we unite it with His. Whatever trials we endure, we believe they will ultimately culminate in glory with Christ.
My journey has shown me the transformative power of aligning with God’s will and embracing His path. It is a journey of surrender, perseverance, and growth. To be prepared to die for Him and the Gospel, we must first fall in love with Him. Our faith must be lived out in accordance with God’s will. Those who seek to preserve their lives must pick up their cross and follow Jesus. Notice the distinction—Jesus said, “God’s will, not your will,” and “Pick up,” not “pick out” your cross. This difference is especially important!
Written by Kit Lee