So it had been probably more than a month since I went and looked at my Google Reader page, and today I found that there were hundreds of entries for the blogs I've subscribed to (note to self: must read them more frequently!).
But scrolling through some of them, I found exactly what I needed to hear today. I'd been struggling to put my feelings of inadequacy and frustration -- I'm not miserable but I'm hardly fulfilled after close to six years at my job with nothing to show for it aside from 36 extra cents per hour, single as I ever was and wishing for something more but not knowing what exactly that something more is -- into words (I even stooped to writing some mopey, very pathetic (and stupid) poetry this afternoon, from which you will be spared).
It makes me think of Belle in "Beauty and the Beast" -- the bookish "princess" I've always identified with most -- and that scene in the field just before her family horse rushes up to her, sans her father:
"I want adventure in the great wide somewhere, I want it more than I can tell. And for once it might be grand to have someone understand, I want so much more than they've got planned..."
But Blessed JP II (probably at a WYD) did it for me. Elizabeth Scalia, over at The Anchoress, posted it 13 days ago:
“It is Jesus in fact that you seek when you dream of happiness; he is waiting for you when nothing else you find satisfies you; he is the beauty to which you are so attracted; it is he who provokes you with that thirst for fullness that will not let you settle for compromise; it is he who urges you to shed the masks of a false life; it is he who reads in your hearts your most genuine choices, the choices that others try to stifle. It is Jesus who stirs in you the desire to do something great with your lives, the will to follow an ideal, the refusal to allow yourselves to be ground down by mediocrity, the courage to commit yourselves humbly and patiently to improving yourselves and society, making the world more human and more fraternal.”
I do feel mediocre, like I am settling somehow for the compromise, or that, sinner that I am, this is all I deserve. There are so many things I hope for, or would love to do, but I feel so limited. By my location, and by being either over or under-qualified for jobs I might want. I don't want to have a defeatist attitude...it's too much like how my father tends to handle things...and yet I find myself falling into that pattern sometimes, ground down by the day-to-day.
Yet, I think God uses it, too, to help us turn and return again and again to him, toward hope and away from doubt. It is a reminder I will always need, and I am thankful for it. I may have limitations, but God can and will step in where I lack, making me stronger than I am alone, improving me, one little bit at a time.