Saturday, February 4, 2012
Do you feel ready?
I've been back in Oregon this week to meet with the people who control my fate as a priest. I am happy (very happy) to report that I have been approved. Of course, now begins the hard work of finding an opportunity to practice that ministry, though I actually feel pretty hopeful about that. But what's really on my mind is the question of readiness? Do I feel ready to take this on? Have I been adequately prepared?
I've worked at my studies, I know I've learned stuff. I've been involved in the parish, at school and at the hospital practicing and reflecting on the practice of vocational ministry. I know my perspective on the world and the church has shifted, my understanding of God is deeper. I even know how to fix a furnace and write a budget. I feel well prepared. However, I have no doubts I will flounder and make mistakes at the first church I serve as an ordained person.
Being here reminds of where I was ten years ago preparing for baptism. Was I ready? Was I a fully formed Christian? Of course I wasn't. My "faith" largely existed in my head as a philosophical proposition, my perspective was still focused on what God did for me and I felt I could take an a la carte approach, doing only what was good for me. I haven't fully and completely left that behind (I'm still a regular human, it turns out) but on the night I lowered my head over the font and the water flowed down my face I was willing and ready to make the commitment to being faithful even though there was still a long way to go.
Now, as I stand on the threshold of a new sacrament, ordination, I think I feel the same way. I am as prepared as I can be to make the commitment to living into the promises I will make in prayer that they may guide me and form me into whomever it is I am called to be. I hope I am a good priest, or at least not a bad one, but I promise I will try to be open to the movement of the Spirit that drew me in so long ago and that beckons me forward still.
at 11:52 AM