God & The Work For God


Because of your infinite love for me, Lord, you called me to follow you, to be your child and your disciple. 

Then you entrusted me with a unique mission that has the same requirements as every mission: that I be your apostle and witness. 

Still, my experience has taught me that I confuse these two realities: God and God's work. 

God gave me the responsibility to carry out certain works- some sublime and others more modest; some noble and others more common. 

And so, with a commitment to pastoral work in parishes and with young people in schools, with artists and laborers, in the world of the press, radio, and television, I gave my entire energy to everything and poured out all my abilities. 

I did not spare anything, not even my life. But, while I was so passionately immersed in action, 

I met the defeat of ingratitude, the refusal to collaborate, the incomprehension of friends, the lack of support from leaders, illness and infirmity, insufficient resources ... 

And, then when I happened to enjoy success, when I was the object of everyone's approval, praise, and affection, 

I was suddenly transferred to another position. So there I was, dazed, groping about as if in the dark of night: Why, Lord, are you abandoning me? I do not want to desert your work I want to complete it. 

I must finish building the Church ... Why do others attack your work? Why do they withdraw their support? 

Kneeling before your altar, close to the Eucharist, 

I heard your answer, Lord: 

"It is me you are supposed to be following, not my work! 

If I will it, you will finish the work entrusted to you. 

It matters little who takes over your work after you; 

that is my business. 

Your business is to choose me!" 

from Prayers of Hope—Words of Courage by Cardinal Francis Xavier Nguyễn Văn Thuận pp. 116-117