I know this blog is a bit of mess and I'm sorry about that. I need this block of time right now to brainstorm my interior life and so that is what I do here. The vulnerability helps substitute for a lack of intimacy and makes me feel connected, however distant and disinterested you may be.
One of the problems I have always had with the average lay Catholic lifestyle is that it is largely predicated on a stable social system. The problem for me is that the system is not stable. Some of the reason that I am in the state of life I am (single, poor, under the whip) has to do with my choices not to follow the mainstream. Growing up, I was one of those people who would avoid something simply because it was popular (pop music, pop entertainment, pop education, pop economics, pop religion, pop culture). Of course there was pride in this desire to take a different road, but I have learned much from it both positive and negative. The rebel spirit leads to ignoring a lot of pop wisdom as well and therefore to making a lot of mistakes that could have been avoided. Oh well. No regrets but sin.
For many years now I have attempted to submit to the 'normal' solely for the purpose of training myself in the Christian virtue of obedience. The advantage to having lived on both sides of the aisle are many. I understand people's motivations, I understand their frustrations, I see how God guides everyone and how the devil will pervert anything. And despite what may seem a grandiose imagination for the spiritual life, I am in disposition a very logical and practical man. I am instinctually efficient. The only question is what am I being efficient for? A long time ago I made the choice to be as much as I could be in service of the Gospel. A significant part of that mission involved interdisciplinary studies, so that I could in a sense survey the state of affairs in as many walks of life as possible. I understand the academic. I understand the athletic. I know the hipster and the gangster and the playboy and the prophet, the lawyer and the teacher, the priest and the soldier, the plumber and the chef, the physician and the psychologist. Implicitly or explicitly each one is bound to the other in the Body of Christ. Of this I am certain because this I have seen. It is my gift. To see God at work in every moment, in every place, in every state, with an eye to the future.
Returning to the theme of instability, because I see the Gospel playing out everywhere all the time, I recognize the fragility of each person's world. We are all destined for Crucifixion. That is the story. You see, we are caught up in the Love Story of God whether we like it or not. Everybody. Even the atheists. Suffering is the efficiency of Love. Our biggest issue seems to be that we don't prepare ourselves for it. We still think we are sinless in the garden, or else we think we can have heaven now. Well we do in Christ, but no where else. And we are always looking elsewhere, for life in Christ is humiliating, torturous, and uncompromising. Because suffering is the efficiency of Love.
I believe that the founding fathers understood this. They knew that self-governance was a privilege that had to be fought for and had to be defended. But we let our children forget and now they take it for granted. They do not see that history is war and war is always coming. A new civil war is upon us today. I am trying to discern how to prepare my family or at least myself, and that is the complication that makes my discernment so difficult right now.