Wednesday, January 25, 2012

What would you sacrifice?

I recently read a book about Mother Theresa. Most people don't know that while Mother Theresa was a beacon of giving and love to hundreds of thousands of people around the world, she was also a Catholic sister who struggled greatly with her faith. She called it her "dark night" - difficulty believing in God, difficulty justifying her actions. It's surprising when you hear it, that someone so devout and selfless could be so conflicted.

Mother Theresa is the world's picture of self-sacrifice. She gave of herself freely and willingly all her life to affect the lives of those who were the poorest and most destitute in the world. She did so, without reservation, because it was her calling.

So I asked myself, reading this book, was Mother Theresa happy? She always wore this simple smile. But knowing how she struggled with her faith, I wondered, deep inside, did her work make her happy? (The true answer here is that Mother Theresa would say that happiness is something only God can provide, and that we shouldn't focus at all on human happiness, but go with me here....)

Then, I asked myself, Would I be willing to make the kind of sacrifices Mother Theresa made?.......for anything? Would I make those sacrifices for my family, for my nieces and nephew, for my husband? Sure I would. I would sacrifice everything I had, believed, wanted, to ensure their safety and happiness. But then comes the questions I asked about Mother Theresa....what about my happiness?

There's the question, then. What would I sacrifice for my own true happiness? My job? My home? My expensive gym membership? What if all of those things disappeared but I was sublimely happy?

I hate when I write posts that have no point...this one doesn't, really. Just a question being asked. What would I sacrifice to be happy?


  1. Would you recommend this as a book for others to read? If so, what was the title and who was the author?

  2. I would absolutely recommend the book! It is called "Unquenchable Thirst: Following Mother Theresa in Search of Love, Service, and an Authentic Life." The author is Mary Johnson. Although I'll warn, it's definitely not a book to read if you're sensitive to criticism of the Catholic church. The book is written by a sister who left Mother Theresa's order after over 20 years. So it's a beautiful picture of Mother Theresa, but also quite critical of her order and can be explicit in some of its issues with the church, specifically. I loved it - I read it on Amtrak over NYE and could NOT put it down!