“God Willing” is a phrase that was said from the very first day of diaconate formation. The phrase “God Willing” over the four to five plus years of diaconate formation took on a larger meaning than the full phrase “God willing when you become a deacon.” I knew what this meant for Jeff, my husband and the other men who were acknowledging and saying “Yes” to a calling into the diaconate. But what did that mean for me as a wife who is supporting and walking side by side with my husband through the diaconate formation process? In looking back “God Willing” started well before attending the first meeting about the diaconate.
This discernment or decision process has been one that has been guided for more than just the five years in formation. In looking back, I can see where in different places in my life that God was giving me opportunities to say “Yes” in preparation not only for my husband, Jeff, but also for me to be a part of this journey. I was growing stronger not only in my faith, but also as a person. I was given opportunities to say “Yes” to work, volunteer and to be a part of things both in and outside of the church that took me out of my comfort zone and into situations I never thought I could see myself being in. By saying “Yes” to these opportunities and working through the uncomfortableness I was then able to see, to feel and to hear the changes in my thoughts and perceptions on my faith and of myself. Though saying “Yes” to these things was often extremely uncomfortable, it was also a blessing, and a preparation for what was to come, “God willing”.
It states in James 2:26, “For as the body without a spirit is dead, so also faith without works is dead,” but was I ready for the diaconate journey with Jeff, was I ready for the actions that pursuit would entail? The answer repeatedly from God was “Yes” and the diaconate formation process showed me that though I am still a work in progress, by continuing to move out of my comfort zone and allowing myself to dive deeper into the expansion of my knowledge of spirit and faith through the various classes I was able to achieve so much more than I ever thought possible. Through this process of learning about the diaconate and developing my spirituality and prayer life through classes, field trips and volunteer opportunities I was given the chance to put my faith into action, learning that “God willing” for me meant to surrender, that being uncomfortable is a good thing, and to listen and hear what God’s will is and what God is calling me to do.
Through the loving and caring encouragement and support of Jeff, the diaconate office, the diaconate formation board, my classmates, friends, family, as well as from many current deacon wives I feel better prepared to be the wife of a deacon. I also know that I will learn as I grow and grow as I learn, God willing!
Many blessings Lumen Christi, the diaconate class of 2021! My dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ may your light continue to shine for all to see. God Bless.