I was the lector at mass this morning in the Chapel at St. Michael’s Villa where many of our senior Sisters live. I’m actually living next door now, so it’s wonderful to have such a faithful and welcoming praying community so close by.
Today’s first reading is a favorite of mine from 1 Samuel Chapter 3, where the young Samuel is called again and again by God. Samuel doesn’t know who is calling him, so he goes and wakes up Eli, thinking he was the one calling him. It seems to me like Eli is somewhat annoyed at being awoken again and again, until he finally gets it, and says to Samuel: “Go to sleep, and if you are called, reply, ‘Speak, LORD, for your servant is listening.’” It was a pleasure to proclaim the word for my CSJP Sisters this morning, particularly this passage.
I also found myself remembering this video prayer reflection which I made a few years ago on retreat at Stella Maris, our retreat house on the Jersey Shore. It is set to a song by indie singer-songwriter Sufjan Stevens. The song has always reminded me of this passage, and of God’s persistent love.
How wonderful it is that God calls, and calls, and calls, until we get it, until we are ready. God is persistent and faithful and waiting for our yes. And sometimes, perhaps most times really, it takes others to help us realize and understand and respond to the call.