The following is a transcript of a Raised Catholic Podcast episode. To listen to the episode, click here.
Today is episode 69: Enough
Hi friends. Well, since I teach music with preschoolers, it was bound to happen sooner or later, but this week I experienced my first cold in literally years. As the days wore on, I kept hoping for improvement but like colds tend to do with me, this one turned into a sinus infection and as I’m speaking to you, I can feel it in my chest and all of that to say that friends, it has been a week. This week I had to cancel some music classes and other commitments and rearrange a bunch of stuff that I really wanted to do, and each time I made the call to do that, it came with a good helping of Catholic guilt and a complicated calculus about what I could and should let go. I never want to let anyone down.
When it comes to my music classes, because I work for myself in a program that I created, there is no back-up teacher for me, but also, I want to be safe and not get others sick but also if I’m not where I said I would be, I could disappoint kids and families and disrupt their schedules and maybe even get into hot water with some of the places I’ve contracted with and oh gosh my brain is such a busy place to be, isn’t it? It’s a lot, I know. But the reality was that this week, I had come to the end of myself, and I just had to say: enough.
Did you notice that so much of the calculus around each one of my decisions this week was about other people? And I’m wondering if you were born and raised Catholic like I was, if you were taught that your value lay in your action; your service or your presence or your prayers that are for the benefit of other people, and all of that is so good, but in our faith formation, many of us seem to be missing an inherent care for ourselves as the beloved children of God that we are. We don’t always find ourselves worthy of the care that we extend to others. I wonder if you can relate to that.
So, true, I had a good plan for us this week, my friend. I wanted to offer you support and a road map to help you to enter into Holy Week well, and to really find yourself and God there. It was a good plan, but unfortunately, I find myself derailed and I’m in need of your grace and a shorter episode than I planned. Yet, you know, as I think about it, maybe this change of plan is a good, though very tiny microcosm picture of why the events of Holy Week are so important for us in the first place.
Because no matter how lofty our goals, we humans routinely come to the end of ourselves, don’t we, to what we can do on our own power and the beauty and gift, and miracle of Holy Week is that when we do come to the end of ourselves, there is more. There’s a well-spring of grace available to us from a God who walks with us and who carries our burdens and who makes all things new. No, we can’t make up the difference. We can’t be everywhere, do all the things, touch every situation that needs our action or attention, but the good news is that God can, and God does. He takes it on for us, He carries the Cross, He goes further than we ever could, and God Himself finds us – you and me – precious and valuable enough to do that.
And that is where our hope lies. No friend, it’s true that we are not enough but the Good News is that we were never meant to be.
Thanks for listening today, friend. I know it’s a short episode but thank you to you and to the many people who have offered me much needed grace this week as I try to heal. You are a picture of God for me, and I appreciate you! As we enter into Holy Week together, please know that I’ll be praying for you and your dear ones to encounter Jesus in a new way as the very best teacher, brother, and friend that you could ever ask for. Please pray for me and mine as well.
If you’d find it helpful, there are lots of Raised Catholic episodes – 68 of them to be exact – that you could explore this week along with resources for each one that you can check out. In addition, church communities literally everywhere are offering tons of liturgies and faith experiences this week if you’re looking and these are just an online search away. But however, you decide to enter The Story and practice your faith in this time, I pray that you will encounter God and His upside-down, unthinkably wonderful kingdom this week. Our God is better than we could have imagined and what He has done for us is nothing we could have even known to ask for. It’s amazing grace, friend, thanks be to God. So, blessed Holy Week to you and to yours, and I’ll see you next time.