The Next Generation
This picture of my kids sits on my desk at work.
When I look at this picture, even though I can't see their faces, I know that Joey and Hannah are looking at me. They look to me as their father and with that comes a huge responsibility that is sometimes difficult to comprehend. But, the most important part of that responsibility is to show them God's love and also to provide an example of what it means to live out my Catholic faith. I hope that when my kids see me playing drums at Mass and during worship events, they see me using the gifts that God has given me to glorify Him. I hope that they see that my love of music and my love of God can go hand in hand and that they have the ability to use their unique gifts for God's glory as well. As they grow and discover the gifts that God has generously given them, I pray that they find a way to use them in a way that brings them closer to the Father.
It is all of our responsibilities to use the gifts our Father has given us for His glory and to help others realize their gifts and do the same. We all have the choice to use our gifts for ourselves or for God. I spent many years using my gifts for myself and I never felt that my gift of music had any purpose or direction. I always loved playing music, but often thought "why am I doing this" or "why should I spend all this time practicing, I'm never going to be a professional musician or going to make a living doing this so whats the point?". When I got the opportunity to play music in a group that was centered around Christ, my understanding of my gift began to change. I realized that music could be a way for me to connect with God and to use my gifts for a purpose that glorifies God and can even help draw others closer to God. Music has taught me how to worship and has helped me deepen my relationship with God. Knowing that I am now using my gift of music for the purpose God intended is fulfilling in a way that playing music for my own pleasure never was. Being part of a group that can bring others closer to God has personally given me a sense of direction and drive to share my faith with others and to help others realize that their gifts can be used for the Glory of God.
My hope for my children is that they can find their unique gifts from God and discover how they can use them for the purpose that God indented. It is important to realize and cultivate your individual strengths but what brings true fulfillment is using them for God's purpose.