Tonight is our monthly Theology on Tap gathering. I’m in charge of getting the speakers, so I suppose it looks like a cop-out tonight when the speaker is me.
To my defense, people have asked me in the past if I would speak sometime, but it always seemed a little strange for me to speak when I’m supposed to be hosting it. What am I going do tonight — introduce myself? I guess so.
But the reason I’m speaking is not because I was too lazy to get a speaker – it’s because the topic I wanted addressed is something that’s been on my heart a lot lately, and when I thought about who I might ask to speak about it, I decided I should just do it. It would give me a chance to think about it more, and it would ensure what I wanted said would be said!
The topic is the Art of Waiting, a phrase stolen from this book of talks by Mother Mary Francis.
When I told people the name of the talk, people would often ask me, “Waiting? For what?” That itself was fruit for meditation. Aren’t we all waiting for something? Most of my audience tonight is in the in between stage of their life — many of them have graduated from college or are in graduate school and are discerning their next step. They may have jobs but are not in serious relationships, or they may be in serious relationships but unsure of marriage. So we can find ourselves in this period of waiting … waiting for the next step, for the next thing, for what comes next.
But even those not in this in between stage are still waiting for something. We spend our whole lives waiting. We wait to get married and then we wait for children and then we wait for those children to leave us alone and give us some peace and quiet. We say we’ll be happy when we’re married, then we say we’ll be happy when we have kids. We say we’ll be happy when we discern our vocation, and then we say we’ll be happy when we make final vows.
If we aren’t happy waiting… we ain’t going to be happy. Because ultimately, the only time in our life we won’t be waiting for something is after we die and go to Heaven. Then we’ll be perfectly happy.
So really, we’re all waiting to die. But no one really thinks about that.
Tonight’s talk is gong to tackle a few things:
-The two extremes of waiting: 1) those who never wait [Christmas without Advent, instant gratification] and 2) those who always wait [people who are afraid to take the next step, who'd rather perpetually discern rather than take a leap of faith]
-What we do while we wait
-The remedy Jesus Christ gives us while we wait – also known as the “pledge of future glory” …
So if you’re in the area, come by Corner Pub tonight, buy me a beer, and hear it for yourself. If you’re not in the area, well, invite me to speak to your Theology on Tap group sometime … because I know there are lots of Catholic young adults out there in the same predicament.
In the meantime, I have Mumford and Sons on repeat. Which song? Oh, you know.