Shortly after we were married, my wife introduced me to a cassette tape program by Dr. Denis Waitley. (Yes, it was a long time ago.) "The Psychology of Winning" put me on a life-long quest to not miss out on the opportunities each day brings. Have I always succeeded? No. However, I have certainly grown from studying the principles taught by Dr. Waitley, Wayne Dyer, John Maxwell, Jon Gordon, Zig Ziglar, Napoleon Hill, and so many more. I am grateful to these authors and to each person that has impacted my life in a positive way through the years.
Reading secular books by authors encouraging me to live a fruitful life has complemented my study of the Sacred Scriptures, Church documents, the lives of the saints, and a vast array of other spiritual reading. Combining all of these things together has spurred me on to strive for developing discipline and consistency in my spiritual journey. Once again, do I always do it well? No. The spiritual journey is a life-long process.
How did I live my best life today? After my last virtual meeting concluded this evening, I decided to go for a walk. It was just me, a farmer tilling his field, and a bunch of birds taking advantage of the freshly turned soil and the goodies lurking just beneath. The birds could recognize this beautiful opportunity in front of them. It was good to see a sign of new life. Seeing the birds and smelling the fresh dirt lifted my spirits as I watched the tractor go down the field. I grew up on a farm. I still treasure those memories of spending hours on a tractor each spring as we prepared the ground for planting.
There are so many people hurting right now from the shutdown of our country that my heart just aches. This quiet walk gave me an opportunity to pray while getting a little exercise. I prayed for the sick, the dying, the isolated, and the lonely. I prayed for all the workers, especially those who have the potential to be in contact with people carrying the virus. I prayed for all of the unemployed. I prayed for small business owners. I prayed for those individuals stressed to the point of breaking. I prayed for the clergy missing their flocks. I prayed for the Church, our nation, and the whole world.
This Holy Week will be like no other Holy Week for me. I am grieving the loss of not celebrating these special days. On the other hand, I need to look for the opportunities contained in this turn of events. How can this week still be fruitful?
These past few weeks have been extremely difficult. I want to take just a moment to say thank you. It has been good to connect with many of you via text, email, social media, and a few phone calls. The positive stories have certainly been welcome.
Here locally, I want to thank the Saint Albert Catholic Schools community. These have been uncharted waters for me. I have never been involved in closing down school during a pandemic before. Our team has done the best we can with the constantly changing circumstances. I am grateful to my fellow administrators for all of your work during these chaotic times. I am grateful to all of the faculty members for your flexibility. Your ability to change from a brick and mortar teacher to an on-line teacher with very little notice is amazing. Thank you for going above and beyond the call of duty. Parents, I know this has been quite a switch for you as well. Thank you for your support in making this transition. I am grateful to all of you that make Saint Albert the beautiful institution that it is.
What are the opportunities coming to you during these days of social distancing? In the midst of the struggle, I simply encourage you to allow God to touch you profoundly during this Holy Week!