Call Me Interruptible: Finding Grace in the Unexpected



There is a wonderful song written by Sammy Cahn and made famous by Frank Sinatra titled “Call Me Irresponsible.”  The singer plaintively begins with “Call me irresponsible. Call me unreliable. Throw in undependable, too.” But the ending melodically makes clear that “it’s undeniably true, that I’m irresponsibly mad for you.”

A Visit from the Savior

This great American songbook melody came to mind when I was reading a blog post by Fr. Michael Connors, CSC.  In it, he quoted St. Benedict’s famous tenet, “Let every guest be received as Christ Himself,” but then challenged, “Even the rudest, the most untimely interruption could be a visit from no less than the Savior Himself.”

We all know that we make plans, and God laughs. We are surprised when a single day goes as planned. But do we truly see each detour, each surprise phone call, each unintended meeting and nagging intrusion as a gift rather than an inconvenience? Do we trust God enough to know that we will get done all of the mundane things that we need to do if we allow ourselves to follow His plan first?

In his wonderful treatise Mere Christianity, C.S. Lewis reminds us that, like a parent guiding a child’s hand, “We love and reason because God loves and reasons and holds our hand while we do it.” We can reason because God reasons and “lends us a little of His reasoning powers.” We can love because He puts His love in us. But because we have free will, we can refuse to accept His reasoning and His love. We should not be surprised, then, when we are incapable of thinking or loving the way He does, and we end up far away from Him.

Welcome the Interruption

As we see in the Gospel accounts of Jesus’ actions and parables, He always welcomes the interruption of one who is lost or needy. He doesn’t regard a surprise penitent or a nagging beggar as an inconvenience or a burden. He stops, listens, and helps. And it is we ourselves who frequently are that interruption.

If our Lord, whose plans surely surpass our own in importance, can be open to all of the interruptions we send Him, can’t we follow His example in our own walk? If we truly wish to follow Him, we must allow His reasoning and love to flourish and flow through us.

O Lord, make me interruptible because I want to be undeniably in love with You.

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