BIBLICAL POINTS OF REFERENCE:
"Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light for my path."
"All scripture is inspired by God and is useful for teaching, for refutation, for correction, and for training in righteousness, so that one who belongs to God my be competent, equipped for every good work."
~2 Timothy 3:16-17
When I was in ninth grade, I made my Holy Confirmation in the Catholic Church, and a couple months later, I was allowed to start participating in Church activities and taking on new roles. With that in mind, I decided to become a Lector, or a reader of the Word during Mass. I really thought this was the perfect job for me; I love talking in front of people, I love God and His Word, and I thought I would be pretty good at it because of all my theatre experience. Something I learned very quickly, however, is that reading the Word is nothing like acting and singing in front of an audience - in fact, for me, it is much more nerve-wracking and serious. I get so nervous when I am about to Lector and when I am at the Ambo; I always want to run away, and I get so nervous that I will misread something or not pronounce a biblical name correctly. Why, after all my time performing and speaking in front of people, does the simple act of reading the Word get me so worked up and nervous? Simple: when you're reading the Word at Mass, you're doing it for and before God. You are doing it in front of the Savior Himself, right up close and personal. For me, it is almost like I can feel Him watching me over my shoulder. It's a powerful experience, to say the least. So what does it mean to do this kind of thing before God? Although I am sure there are many right answers to this question, I'm going to go with this: it means feeling His presence more closely, and feeling His beautiful power more thoroughly. That would make anyone nervous, and I'm sure I am not the only Lector who feels it! But something even more wonderful about this role in Mass is that the Lector has the unique opportunity to understand the readings in a way that the congregation does not: they speak the Word as the community listens. They pronunciate and use a certain tone that expresses God's own words in the Bible. That is a powerful tool in and of itself, and maybe that's why I feel the need to not take it lightly and practice a good number of times before I Lector. My point to all this is that when you are before God, whether that be as a Lector or on your own Judgement Day, do not be nervous to be in front of God. God is good, all the time. God is our Father. God gives us our challenges so that we might overcome our fears, nerves, worries, and concerns and bring them to Him. Although I am still working on offering my nervousness up to God when I Lector, it is my challenge and my hope for you all this week that you let yourself be before God, and that you ask for peace in His Name alone. Before God, we are made in His image and likeness, in His perfect strength, and in His amazing love. Your Laughing Sister, Callahan