St. Aloysius Gonzaga was a well-connected young man who lived during the Renaissance. His father longed for him to become a military hero, and brought him up in the court society. But Aloysius was affected from an early age by a desire to become one with God, and often practiced great penance and asceticism. By age eleven, he was teaching catechism to poor children, and fasting three times a week. I don’t really remember what I was doing at age eleven, but I know my piety was not nearly as advanced as Aloysius! He eventually decided he would like to join the Jesuits, but had to wage a four-year battle with his father, who eventually relented and let him forsake his right to succession and join the novitiate.
Sometimes our plans, for ourselves or for others, are far different than the plans God has. I always tell people that if you really want to be happy with your life, you have to do what God wants you to do, whatever that is. That takes a lot of discernment, which can take a lot of time. But maybe the first step is to remove that nasty splinter in the eye of our heart. We have to be able to see what God wants for us, but that might mean we have to get our own desires, our own self-centeredness, our own plans out of the way so that we can see clearly. All those splinters keep us from true happiness, from the blessed life God wants for his holy ones.