Watch: Why write and keep a Rule of Life?
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Transcript of Video:
Some of you may be asking, “Why have a Rule of Life at all? Why go to all the trouble?” I am reminded of a well-known poem by Mary Oliver called The Summer Day, and at the end of it, she asks a question. She says, “Tell me what it is you plan to do with your one wild and precious life.” So, in a sense, a Rule of Life – that’s the plan; it’s the plan for what you do with that precious gift. I also begin with the understanding, with the sense that life itself is a very precious gift that we have been given by God. So the Rule is what we plan to do with that very precious gift.
So a Rule may be a way of intentionally enhancing our lives in some way, a way of cherishing this wonderful gift that we’ve been given. I think sometimes if somebody gives us a gift their hope is that we are going to not only use it – we’re not going to lock it away someplace, we are going to use it. We’re also going to care for it and cherish it and value it, but we’re also going to enjoy it. So another example comes to mind: let’s say somebody gives me something really nice like, let’s say, one of those fancy Italian sports cars. If they give me a gift like that they’re hoping I don’t put it away in the garage and close the door, but I’ll take it out, I’ll care for it, keep it nice and shiny, and I’ll actually enjoy taking it out on the road, at least once in a while. So the Rule of Life is our plan for making the most of this very precious gift that we have been given. Living life to the fullest.
– Br. Mark Brown