Every year on February 22, the Church celebrates the Feast of the Chair of St. Peter. Confusing to many, this feast is less about an ancient piece of furniture than it is about the office of the pope and his role as a sign of unity and peace.
For the last few weeks, I’ve been reading Interior Freedom by Fr. Jacques Philippe. The book has been helpful in a lot of ways, but one insight in particular has changed the way I view interruptions in my life: I choose to be interrupted.
This January, I attended a talk by Fr. Mike Schmitz on “Anti-fragile Faith.” In it, he posed a simple question: When you face difficulties in life, how will you face them? With a faith that is fragile or a faith that is anti-fragile?
As a professional athletic trainer, I have worked with Olympic-caliber athletes and coaches all the way down to adolescents and kids. In my work, I have noticed one thing that consistently sets apart the best athletes and coaches from all the rest: discipline in preparation. Preparation is far and away the defining factor between a championship team and a team that “just didn’t have it.” Of all the different aspects of sports, preparation is the one that fascinates me the most. It’s also the one that has had the greatest impact on my own life - both spiritually and otherwise.
Please, God, please! Let Tom Brady play well tonight. Please, help my team to win!
My middle school self (please forgive me, but my team pride cannot help but highlight that the Patriots have been playing in Super Bowls for that long!) knelt at her bed, begging God to help her team win. Haven’t we all, from children to seasoned fans, done this? Look at the stands at any close sporting match and you’ll find people with eyes closed and hands clasped together in prayer as the clock winds down. We’ve prayed and bargained and pleaded with God when a game is on the line. And when victory is ours, we exclaim that God was on our side. However, does God really care?