When I first entered a Jesuit institution in the fall of 2016 at Xavier University, I knew very little about the spirituality that I would be focusing on for the years to come. During our orientation, all the staff, leaders, professors, and priests echoed the phrase “Finding God in all things”. I did not realize how impactful this one simple phrase would be on my heart in the years to come. Before entering fully into Ignatian spirituality, I had a limited scope of how I would worship, how I must pray and interact with God, and most importantly, where I saw God. It was almost like I had an on/off switch for my devotion. I would go to mass, pray in an empty side chapel, and say my nightly prayers. I checked all the boxes and did all the “right” things. Little did I know how much more fruitful and flourishing it would be if, instead of putting the Catholic hat on, I decided to actually open up space in myself for God to enter into every moment of my life.
As I slowly let go of my limiting habits, there was an abundance of space for growth in directing my attention toward the realization of all of the deep, tender, and personal moments that God wished to share with me. Oh, how transformational this was! All the weight of my trials, past difficulties, and loneliness vanished as I became aware of the eternal and ever-present Holy Spirit that nestled close to each and every molecule of my body.
I found myself suddenly finding God in all things. Through the rustling leaves that crunch satisfyingly under my feet in the fall, I found God. During praise and worship in adoration with 17,000 people, I found God. In the midst of a warm embrace with a childhood friend, I found God. Being a witness to a vulnerable moment with someone who needs comforting and love, I found God. With this beautiful awareness of God, there is not a moment where finding God seems impossible.
As the second semester of senior year approached, I knew I had a heart for public ministry but I had no idea where God would lead me. I continued to search for my next step in life, but as time went on I started feeling worried, doubtful, and hopeless about my future. I found it increasingly difficult to see God in this time of discomfort. God knew my distressed heart but also knew that the alignment and timing for revealing the next step in His plan had to be beautifully and perfectly timed.
During this uncertainty, I prepared my heart and listened with a careful ear for the little Holy Spirit nudges. In God’s goodness, He guided every aspect of my life to the Jesuit Spiritual Center in a way that I could never have envisioned or planned for my own life. Now being here, I look forward to the personal, spiritual, and ministerial growth that will happen during my time as an Ignite Intern!