Who is the Wind in Your Sails?

Who is the Wind in Your Sails?

By Sister Stefanie MacDonald, OSB

Recently, I was listening to music with my preschoolers in my classroom when a song from the animated movie Moana came on.

How Far I Go is one of those songs that all my students love to sing. If you haven't seen this 2016 Disney animated movie, it's about a girl named Moana who sails out on a mission to save her people and in fulfilling this she discovers her own identity.

As I listened to the music and the lyrics I was suddenly struck with the similarities to discerning a call to religious life.

One of the first lines in the song is: "But I come back to the water, no matter how hard I try."

I know as I was discovering my vocation there were times when I tried hard to turn away, but couldn't. No matter how hard I tried, I kept coming back. 

The song continues: "Every turn I take, every trail I track, Every path I make, Every road leads back, To a place I know, where I can not go, where I long to be."

Our society today tells us that religious life is no longer valid. It's not where we should spend our lives. It's dying out.

Nonsense. There are plenty of younger women who long for the shared purpose and community of religious life. We believe there is a future in it, and that this is what God is calling us. 

The song continues: "But the voice inside sings a different song. What is wrong with me?"

Those who pursue a life deemed correct by friends, family and our entire culture often feel something is missing. 

They feel an emptiness inside.

I know. I used to feel it. It wasn't until I began exploring religious life with an open heart and mind that I began to feel the promise of wholeness.

The song goes on: "And let me know, what's beyond that line, will I cross that line?...It calls me."

It still calls me.

One of the final lines in the songs is: " And no one knows, how far it goes If the wind in my sail on the sea stays behind me. One day I'll know, how far I'll go."

God is the wind in my sail.

As I answered - and continue to answer - my call, I trust in the future. I trust in God.

If the voice inside you "sings a different song," contact me. I'll share my experience. You may take a step toward where you're supposed to be.

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