I have been reading Gracias, Henri Nouwen's journal of his time in South America. This morning, I got to the entry where he talks about his 50th birthday. I did some calculations and figured out that he didn't go to Daybreak, the intentional community where he finally felt at home, until he was 54 or so.
That realization gave me such hope. I love the fact that Nouwen was in a life-long discernment process, and that it didn't bear obvious fruit until the latter part of his life.
Of course, I feel that way because of my own life. In this journal of Nouwen's, I'm reading about all sorts of people who seem to be living a life more dedicated to God than the one that I am living. And yet, with this journal, I read between the lines to see, in ways that I didn't before, that these missionary lives are full of doubt and uncertainty too.
I suspect that none of us can be sure throughout our whole lives that we're doing what we're put on earth to do--if we even believe that we were put on earth to do something specific. Living a life in sync with our values means we must remain ever alert.
This morning's post will be short. I've fallen behind in my online classes, so let me get some papers graded before I head off to work.