Friday, July 10, 2015

Shifting Priorities

On my way to my parish, I pass an old gas station: the pumps are covered with yellow arrows.  Those arrows remind me every time I go to Mass of my time on the Camino, where similar yellow arrows pointed me in the direction of Santiago.

See the yellow arrows on the pump?
And yet, as I get closer to the point when I need to seriously begin the process of planning and training in earnest for going on the Camino in 2016, I'm realizing that my priorities have shifted.  I still want to walk the Camino from beginning to end, and I hope that God allows me to do just that at some point.  However, even if my priorities had not pulled me in other directions, I don't think that my body would currently let me do so.  You see, I'm still having foot pain, and I'm still unable to even run 1 mile with no weight, let alone walk 9-12 miles in a day with 15 lbs. on my back.  My podiatrist doesn't currently think that I need surgery (Thank GOD!!!), but he hasn't ruled it out completely either.  The other option would be to bicycle the Camino, but that would mean losing out on much of the social aspect of the Camino, and I really don't want to do that.  It also means figuring out how to ship a bicycle to Spain, and that just seems really complicated.

So, as much as I want to do something epic to mark my passage into my Forties, walking the Camino, or any kind of hike next summer is out.  I'm not sure what my gift to myself will be, but I have a few ideas percolating.

Many of my own personal priorities have been in flux of late, anyway. To try to choose something that will fit those priorities a year from now wouldn't work at the moment, for I'm not sure what those priorities will be.

As the weeks go on, I will try to talk a little bit about what I've been thinking about, but here are a few questions that have been simmering in the back of my head as a teaser:

  1. What does it mean to be a single lay person in the Church today?  What role do we play in the life of the Church?
  2. What are the things in my life that are obstacles to saying yes to God? How can I work on removing them?
  3. I've been given this huge blessing of my own house. How can I use that gift as a blessing to others?
  4. One of the things I loved about my time with the Sisters in Chicago was the rhythm of prayer that their life revolved around. How can I both incorporate that into my own life, yet balance it with the rest of my obligations?
  5. What does it mean to be "in the world, not of it"?  
I don't have the answers to the above, and I may never have those answers, but they are definitely worth pondering, and prayerfully exploring.  It will be interesting to see where these questions take me.