The Greatest Achievement

Do you want to do something great?
Do you want to be everything God wants you to be?
Do you want to fulfil your purpose in every possible way?

I do. But until yesterday, life just seemed so complicated, so tiring, so frivolous at times, that I didn't know where to start. And then I realized everything is much simpler than it seems on the surface.

There is only one thing that really matters in the end, and that is love.

To love is the greatest thing anyone can ever do. Nothing we can achieve will ever be more important, nothing we can give our lives to will ever be more crucial. It was love which motivated God to create the world, love which brought Him to earth as a helpless babe, love which gave Him the desire to bleed and suffer and die for us. It is in loving that we are most like God, for God is Love.

Can there be any greater goal, then, than the pursuit of that quality which most correctly sums up all the attributes of our Creator? Love is the wellspring of all other virtues - from her refreshing stream bubbles the fire of courage, the breath of mercy, the flower of humility. If we have love, love primarily for God and therefore for neighbor, we have everything we need.

Only love will matter in the end. After I have died, I will not care how many strangers consider my name the name of a great authoress or an inspiring poet. It won't make any difference to me whether anyone recognizes my picture or not. All that matters will be how I have shown my love for God and for others.

It's a terrifying thought, that love is really more important than any of the grand and spectacular feats I've planned for myself. It frightens me half to death to think that playing with my little brother is a greater act of valor than writing a masterpiece of a space trilogy. That washing the dishes is more heroic than composing a poem to inspire people in the ages yet to come. That devoutly receiving one Holy Communion is more saintly than converting millions to the truth by some witty essay. That caring enough to correct a friend in some little sin does more good than trying to preach to the whole world through a moralizing novel. That living my life with love, day by day in my own little world, is the most amazing thing I will ever be called to do.

It is terrifying to realize how small I am, how insignificant is my own strength. But I take courage knowing that God's strength is far beyond anything I could ever hope to achieve.

With Him, I can do all things...even such hard and glorious things as giving up my impossible dreams for the little things that best show that greatest of things, love.


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