What Else?

by | Sep 1, 2015 | Reflections, Vincentian Family

E-Vo September 2015 Would you dare ask Jesus “What else”? A  young man did. In the lead story in the September issue of E-Voc S. Janet Gildea asks “What Else?”.  E-Voc is the electronic newsletter from the Vocation Team of the Sisters of Charity of Cincinnati for single women wondering what new thing God is calling forth in their lives.

What Else?

By S. Janet Gildea

“A young person approached Jesus and asked, ‘What good must I do to gain eternal life?’” We know that Jesus answered with a question, “Why do you ask me about what is good?” Then he said: “Keep the commandments” and proceeded to spell them out so there would be no question. But there was a follow-up: “I’ve done all those. What else?”

Would you dare to ask Jesus, “What else must I do?” Fr. Ronald Rolheiser, OMI, says that most Christians want to be about 90 percent “good.” It’s that last 10 percent that we are not so willing to strive to attain. Like those last pesky 10 pounds you want to lose, they come off the slowest of all and often require extra effort. How much energy are you willing to expend on the spiritual journey?

Jesus doesn’t leave the spiritual seeker in suspense. The “what else” involves untangling yourself from whatever else possesses you. How do you hear this advice from Jesus to “sell what you have … give to the poor … follow me”? What would it mean in your life?

Fr. Rolheiser explained that it was a group of priests who gathered on a regular basis for support as a way to work on that last 10 percent. They had discovered that the group helped keep them honest with themselves.

Forming a kind of intentional community, they agreed to be accountable for their lives, their commitments, their spiritual disciplines.

The young person of the Gospel story is personally invited to “Follow me.” So it is with each one of us. But community is an indispensable part of discipleship. We help each other continue on the journey, living the commitment we have made to Christ. We help each other know “what else” is required of us at various points along life’s path and to have the courage to keep selling all, giving to the poor and following Jesus on his self-emptying way. Where do you find such a community of faith? Who will help you know “what else” is asked of you?