Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Mary and the Great Commission

I've always been something of an introvert.  I peacefully enjoy experiencing and feeling, holding things deep within me, and turning them over and over, again and again, with my mind and my heart.  I experience deeply and express only timidly.

I love when the Bible tells us that our Blessed Mother "pondered these things in her heart."  It's and image and feeling with which I readily identify.  I treasure that which I am able to ponder in my own heart.  Imagine how filled - to the brim and overflowing - Mary's heart must have been.  Imagine the glory of God that could radiate out from her heart.  It is a magnificently beautiful description upon which to meditate.

I do so love the moments in my life when the pondering of my own heart overflows into inexpressible joy.

But Jesus did not call us merely to experience God and hold Him within.  He called us to go out, to bring others to His Father through Him.  He promised to be with us always as we bring discipleship to the world. 

The question I've been asking myself is this: does my honest love of being an introvert, one who can ponder genuinely and experience with the depths of herself, keep me from my Great Commission calling?

Granted, I do not hold everything within.  My work in youth ministry, the depths of my friendships, and certainly many of these blog posts are nothing if not the overflowing result of my experience of the God of the Universe.  However, there are many, many times during which I shrink away from a conversation or a situation because it appears so overwhelmingly contrary to me.

So, what am I neglecting? Where am I holding back? How much further is God calling me to go? When does my natural, God-given tendency to hold precious things close to my heart - to seldom express - interfere with my call, as a Christian, to spread the Gospel in word and in deed?  How should I be more compelled in my actions to not withdraw into that quiet place, which is good and holy and truly of God, yet comfortable and easy and only one part of the life of a Christian witness?

How do I balance my inward heart and my outward mission?

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