We often conceive of worldly life as merely a kind of default existence that anyone who is not specially called to monasticism or ordination simply ends up leading. We assume that it is only the monk, nun or priest who has a special call, while the married woman, for instance, has merely been passed by.
However, we must not allow ourselves to approach it merely in these terms. Instead, every one of us should, indeed must, treat lay life as a calling just the way we think of monasticism and ordination. We must sit down with ourselves and with God in prayer to discern if life in the world really is what we are meant for, and if we discover that it is, we must treat this call with the same seriousness with which we would treat a call to a hermit’s life in the desert. We are not lay people simply because we happen not to be monks or priests. We are lay people because God wills that we lead a life seeking our salvation through the world.
Based on Daniel G. Opperwall
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