I Have My Mission
by John Henry Newman
God was all-complete, all-blessed in himself, but it was his will to create a world for his glory. He is Almighty, and might have done all things himself, but it has been his will to bring about his purposes by the beings he has created. We are all created to his glory – we are created to do his will. I am created to do something or to be something for which no one else is created; I have a place in God's counsels, in God's world, which no one else has; whether I be rich or poor, despised or esteemed by man, God knows me and calls me by my name. God has created me to do him some definite service; he has committed some work to me which he has not committed to another. I have my mission – I may never know it in this life, but I shall be told it in the next. Somehow I am necessary for his purposes, as necessary in my place as an archangel in his. – If indeed, I fail, he can raise another, as he could make the stones children of Abraham. Yet I have a part in this great work: I am a link in a chain, a bond of connection between persons. He has not created me for naught. I shall do good, I shall do his work; I shall be an angel of peace, a preacher of truth in my own place, while not intending it, if I do but keep his commandments and serve him in my calling.
Therefore I will trust him. Whatever, wherever I am, I can never be thrown away. If I am in sickness, my sickness may serve him; in perplexity, my perplexity may serve him; if I am in sorrow, my sorrow may serve him. My sickness, or perplexity, or sorrow may be necessary causes of some great end, which is quite beyond us. He does nothing in vain; he may prolong my life, he may shorten it; he knows what he is about. He may take my friends, he may throw me among strangers, he may make me feel desolate, make my spirits sink, hide the future from me – still he knows what he is about.
O my God, I give myself to you. I trust you wholly. You are wiser than I – more loving to me than I myself. Deign to fulfill your high purposes in me whatever they be; work in and through me. I am born to serve you, to be yours, to be your instrument. Let me be your blind instrument. I ask not to see, I ask not to know – I ask simply to be used.
[source: entry for March
7, 1848, Meditations and Devotions, by John Henry Newman]