Sometimes, in the spiritual life, one can run the risk of stagnation or getting comfortable thinking that there is no more to learn, grow or discover, thus falling into a kind of monotony or spiritual boredom. Luckily, God is a God of surprises, and if one is open to grace, He can suddenly burst into our lives and take an unexpected turn, always with the purpose of using us to establish His kingdom on earth and leading us down the path of holiness.
This was what happened to me ten years ago, when I felt that there was not much more left to discover and that I would end my days serving the Lord in a small community 100 kilometers from Mexico City. Providentially, the Emmaus Retreat entered my life, and from there, Jesus asked me to bring the light of this powerful instrument of evangelization to the most hidden and forgotten places, such as the mountains of Puebla, Queretaro, and Tabasco (Mexico) or Cusco (Peru), as well as to the different penitentiary centers. In these ten years I have had all kinds of experiences. I have been hungry, cold, hot, tired, and uncomfortable. Slander and contempt have never been lacking. Even so, my efforts have been greatly rewarded with the privilege of being able to witness how Jesus has been healing, freeing, and rescuing so many souls who, like the two disciples on the road to Emmaus, were not able to recognize Jesus along the way.
As if this adventure was not enough, six years ago, I again felt called by the Lord. This time, I felt He was telling me that He wanted to reach out to youth and bring them closer to Him. This was the birth of a new retreat for me: the Sychar Retreat. Through this retreat, many young people, like the Samaritan woman at the well, have been able to meet Jesus and get to know Him. For this I am grateful.
Because of these experiences, I invite you not to close yourself off from grace; allow yourself to be surprised by God and do not put limits on what He can still work through you.
Mother María Elena Martínez is a nun, born in Mexico City, where she still resides today. She has had a consecrated life for more than 30 years. She is currently a member of a community called María Madre del Amor which is dedicated to evangelization through Emmaus retreats in parishes and prisons and Sicar retreats for young people.