13Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.
I once heard a priest describe his ministry in the church as a car on a freeway. If you are old enough to drive then this analogy is quite simple. When you get on a freeway, you quickly find yourself riding along other cars. Some pass you up and some stay behind you or some ride along the side of you for 2 miles, 7 miles, or longer. Eventually, you reach your exit, merge off the freeway and keep driving.
There are times that I sit in prayer and think of all the people who have wandered away from me. I remember all of the people that I have wandered away from. It’s when I reflect on these moments that this simple analogy becomes real in my life. It is true, there are people who have ridden along my side for quite some time. Some stay a year, some a week, some long enough to read this post. The reality is that friends come and friends go, but true friends stay to watch you grow. I sit back and wonder, will there ever be a time when we might reconnect? Not just for a ‘blast from the past,’ but a real reconnection, a rejoining, a resumption of the friendship routine as if the split had never happened. Probably not, but I pray and hope that it might happen again.
Then there are the ones who are in it for the long haul, the people who are in the car with you; Jesus (the driver), family and true friends. Yes, sounds like a Mexican car in Phoenix but that’s beside the point lol. The ones who stick by you and not only help you figure out your Cross but help you carry the Cross as well.
The Simon’s of Cyrene (Fifth Station) of your life. The friends, who are not afraid to help a scorned person, carry his humiliation in front of a jeering crowd. The friends who does not ignore when he hears a whisper “It’s a crucifixion”. The friend who is not afraid to take on four soldiers, one criminal, four spears and one cross. The friend who is not afraid to saddle the inside corner of the cross on his shoulders. He knows the base of the cross will eventually drag through the dirt, the top will teeter in the air, but the friend knows that I am trying the best I can to steady the cross. The friend knows that I will stumble beneath the weight of the Cross but I will push myself back on to my feet before I fall again.
As I depart to Lawrence, Massachusetts to embark in a new and exciting chapter in my life, I am thankful and grateful for my family and friends who have helped me get to where I’m at. I do not know what God will bring next in my life but I do know that I will not stop wanting more of God’s love for NO ONE; My motivation? Jesus Christ! There have been many people throughout my life who have indirectly or directly try to stop me, but I recall St. Paul’s words, “Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, 14I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus” in the words of Fool Gonzales “and the Goal is Heaven!” I will keep moving forward, forever forward, towards an endless Heaven and a Loving God.