I have a tendency to view myself as "too much." After being told that I feel or process with "too much" depth, or that I talk way "too much," I am aware that I have subconsciously internalized this image of myself as a lot to handle.
In fact, the other day, I was having a conversation with my spiritual director about carrying shame because I felt like I had not fairly warned the people in my life about how messy I really was.
My spiritual director gently stopped me and said, "Sarah, you are speaking like you are a liability when you are a gift."
In today’s Gospel, Jesus is praying to the Father as He prepares to depart from His disciples, and He utters the most mind-boggling words.
"Father, they are your gift to me" (John 17:24).
Sisters, I am not sure about you, but I often struggle to see how my Creator sees me as a gift. His words move me at my core, and I recall all the seasons where I have forgotten my identity as a gift, instead thinking I am a burden or a liability. Yet, there is no lie that Jesus does not want to rescue us from.
As women, this Gospel declares a special truth over our lives. We are reminded that the Messiah is not only a God Who loves us all the way to Calvary, but also really likes us. He is not annoyed with us, but likes us to the point of wanting eternity with us. It is astonishing to remember that He is not out of time for you and I.
He never runs out of delight for us. He hopes we will share in His glory.
He has never seen us as a liability or a burden, but is consistently unreserved in the way that He pursues our hearts. He spends some of His last earthly moments thanking His Father for us.
Will you come on retreat with us this year, sisters? Give yourself the gift of a time set apart to reconnect with Our Lord in the context of sisterhood.
Sarah Erickson is a politics pre-law major at the Catholic University of America in Washington, DC. Born and raised in Arizona, she finds great joy in mountains, lattes, American history, and the piano. She is constantly discovering Christ's wild love in the little things. You can find out more about her here.