“On Opening Our Lives to God”
“You can’t just put part of your life in a box, stick it on a shelf, and pretend it’s not there. You have to open that box up and trust that God will help you look at what’s inside.” –James Martin, SJ in The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything
A painting of St. Ignatius of Loyola by Rubens:
Lately, I’ve been reading the book The Jesuit Guide to (Almost) Everything by Father James Martin, S.J. The work covers the spiritual outlook of St. Ignatius of Loyola and the Catholic order he founded–the Society of Jesus (the Jesuits). Father Martin does an awesome job of outlining the great religious insights of St. Ignatius. Ignatius was a firm believer in the idea that we can find God in all things. Even the most mundane activities can take on spiritual meaning if we allow God to transform them. There is no part of our lives that cannot be touched by God’s love.
In my academic classes on religion at Wake Forest, there is lots of talk about the difference between secular space and religious space. Ignatius and his follower Father Martin would reject that division. All spaces fall under God’s purview. We cannot and should not compartmentalize God’s sovereignty. Personally, I’ve found this concept extremely empowering. Since I’ve taken it to heart, I’ve encountered God in surprising places while doing surprising activities: while peeling potatoes, while driving in the car listening to music, and while surfing the Internet. If we open every aspect of our lives to God’s love, then He will most certainly meet us where we are.
I encourage you to try to find God in all things, at all times, and in all places. You’ll be surprised how much you generally miss!
Thanks for reading this short post. May God bless you in your daily life. May He surprise you with his never-ending peace and compassion.
Your friend in Christ,