I am not afraid. I was born to do this.St. Joan of Arc
An Unintentional Hiatus
You probably noticed that I haven’t been keeping up with my usual posting schedule. This is because I gave myself a break from blogging. I’ve been doing a lot of working, traveling, and socializing lately, so about two weeks ago, I was so physically and mentally exhausted that I couldn’t bring myself to work on Radiant with Joy. For one week, I couldn’t write or post any content. I couldn’t even tweet. Dropping the ball on this blog devastated me, but even though I didn’t want that break, I needed it.
Understandably, It was hard to get back into the swing of blogging, but I took baby steps to start again. When I started writing again, I immediately remembered how much I love to blog. I’m glad that I’m now well-rested and have a new sense of motivation. I have a lot of ideas for new posts, and I’m looking forward to documenting my year of service with FMS and continuing to share my faith journey.
Letting Fear Get Me Down
I think a big reason why I shut down for a week is my upcoming move to Washington DC. I’m very excited to move and start a new adventure there, but I’m also so nervous that I’m almost afraid to move. During my final months of college, I couldn’t wait to join Franciscan Mission Service’s DC Service Corps. Unfortunately, my excitement dwindled during the summer, and I felt my joy fading. Instead of anticipating my move, I resented it. I grew afraid of all of the things I looked forward to, like exploring a new city, living in community and helping to run a non-profit. To top it off, hearing about FMS’s protocol in response to the Coronavirus pandemic overwhelmed me and added to my fear of moving.
These fears and anxieties sparked something of a depression in me, and it took a long time for me to shake it. I let my fear of the unknown and my sadness to leave home get the better of me. I spent a lot of time laying around the house doing nothing productive. On one hand, I needed the rest, but on the other hand, I knew this was no way to spend my last weeks at home.
Unfortunately, my sadness didn’t just prevent me from blogging, but it also discouraged me from praying. In hindsight, I realize that not praying only made my sadness and fear worse. I wondered whether Washington DC and Franciscan Mission Service was really God’s will for my life. I began to question his plan, and I felt a more than a little confused and abandoned. Doing nothing to get out of this desolation, it only grew worse as time went on.
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He Wants Me in Washington DC
On Sunday, I went to Mass at Resurrection Parish for the last time before I move. That morning, I was an anxious wreck, knowing that this was the week I would leave everything I knew to start a new adventure in Washington DC. When my parents and I arrived at church, I put on my mask and my veil, genuflected, and knelt to pray. As I offered up my fears and sadness to God, I realized something. It was like a light bulb moment when the simplest statement entered my heart.
God wants me in Washington DC.
I remembered back in March when I got the offer from Franciscan Mission Service. I clearly felt God calling me there. When I accepted my position with FMS, I felt his peace and knew that this was his will. For a while, I couldn’t contain my excitement to go to Washington DC and serve with FMS. I told everyone who would listen about it, and I made a bucket list of things to do in DC during my year of service. As soon as I remembered that God wants me in Washington DC with FMS, I remembered my excitement, and I looked forward to going again.
Lately I’ve been reflecting on St. Joan of Arc’s quote, “I am not afraid. I was born to do this.” If God wants me in Washington DC, then I shouldn’t be afraid to move. By speaking so sweetly in my heart on Sunday, he helped me to let go of my anxieties. He helped me to step out of my desolation and rest in him. I still have some fears and hesitations, but at least now I can still go to DC completely trusting in God.
Please keep me in your prayers as well as the rest of Franciscan Mission Service’s DC Service Corps.
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