Yesterday, I witnessed a good friend of mine take his first set of vows to become a Jesuit priest. He still has a long way and several more years to go but whenever I remember my friend and his chosen vocation, I’m driven to think Deep and Profound thoughts. I asked before why he was choosing to become a priest because I don’t think he even considered the idea until our last year in college. And you know what he said? It was because he felt God calling him. So off he went, moving away from his comfort zone and chucking all his other plans, and I’ve always envied his certainty that he’s doing the right thing. He’s set for life; his decision to become a priest will guide everything else that he does. I’m not saying it’s going to be easy, it’s just that he already found the path that he was meant to take and from what I’ve seen, he’s loving the whole experience.
In comparison, I feel like I’m headed nowhere, like I’m in a boat in the middle of a large body of water and I have no idea where I should steer so I just go along with the flow. I have a feeling that I’m not the only one who feels this way. I’ve talked to my other friends and I’ve told them how jealous I am of people who know where they’re going. So what do you do when you feel lost? Anchor yourself with what you know and rely on what you love to keep you steady. I think that for me, those will always be my family, my friends and my books. Yes, you read that right, as cheesy as it may sound, I love my books and I love reading and I don’t think that will ever change. I may read less than I want to from time to time when life gets busy but I’ll always come back to it. I know for a fact that I would be a very lonely person if I didn’t read books. What would I do with all the hours that I put into reading and blogging?
I think it’s pretty obvious at this point that I’m passionate about reading, this blog is a testament to that. I’m not exactly sure how reading defines me as a person but I know that I wouldn’t be who I am today if not for the books that I read. I look for so many things between the pages that I read: for situations and emotions that I could relate to, for characters to love and sympathize with, for instances when I feel like a scene in a book aptly describes whatever I’m feeling in a way that I could never do, for made-up places that I want to explore, for happy endings even if they’re just in fiction. I could go on and on with this but I think you get the point. And when you think about it, books call out to us too. It may not be as momentous as being called to do a certain profession but it does happen whenever you feel urged to read a certain book. Books beckon readers to turn the pages, promising so much in words printed on ink (or showing up on the screen of an e-reader). Maybe I’m just comforting myself because at the end of the day, I’m still clueless, still trying to figure out what to do with my life. But one thing I can be sure of is that books are a significant part of who I am. Who knows, maybe someone out there is envious of my passion for books the same way that I envy my friend’s conviction in his vocation.
Photo from Tumblr
I think it would be fitting to end with a quote from another Jesuit priest, Fr. Pedro Arrupe:
“Nothing is more practical than finding God, that is, than falling in love in a quite absolute, final way. What you are in love with, what seizes your imagination, will affect everything. It will decide what will get you out of bed in the morning, what you will do with your evenings, how you will spend your weekends, what you read, who you know, what breaks your heart, and what amazes you with joy and gratitude. Fall in love, stay in love and it will decide everything.”