This is a guest post by Jane Knuth.
Today I did my clear and present duty.
Rising early, I prayed the rosary and read some scripture and meditated a bit. Next, the grocery shopping needed to be done, which I followed with 30 minutes of exercise at the gym. The rest of the morning was spent with my college-age daughters cleaning my mom’s apartment, and as a thank-you, I took them out to lunch with a fellow member of St. Vincent de Paul who needed to meet with me to discuss the next month’s schedule at the store. After we ate I bought support inserts for my youngest daughter’s shoes, a graduation present for my nephew, and hunted down some hard-to-find hypo-allergenic deodorant for my oldest daughter.
I took the dog to the vet and comforted her while the vet removed five stitches from her mouth. I reminded my youngest daughter that she had a dentist appointment and while she was gone, I cooked a supper of chicken and salad greens, and then we did the dishes together. Today was my day to check my e-mail and send off some quick replies. After that, I did some research online about a possible career. The only important phone call came from a friend to set up a get together for next week. And while the sun went down, I sat in the backyard and read part of a novel that my husband had recommended to me months ago.
Just now, I was feeling glum because my life doesn’t seem to have a focus or a purpose. There hovers a nagging worry that my college education is gathering dust. Something makes me think that a real, paying job would help, but then I look back over my day and I see that everything that filled up my time needed to be done, and on top of that, I enjoyed most of it.
So why this discontent?
Am I missing out on real life by not having an over-arching goal? Should I trade my jumble of duties for a tidy agenda set by someone else? Is it enough to offer what there is of my life to God and hope that He sees something worthwhile?
Maybe some answers will come to me if I start out tomorrow by praying the rosary and meditating on some scripture…
Jane Knuth is the author of Thrift Store Saints: Meeting Jesus 25¢ at a Time. She has been volunteering at the St. Vincent de Paul thrift store in Kalamazoo, Michigan, for the last 15 years.