The Little Way Of Confidence

Yesterday was the memorial of St. Therese of Lisieux, who is a saint whose understanding of living the Gospel she called her “Little Way”.

Her Little Way has been so recognized by the Church that she is one of only three female “doctors” – or master teachers – of the Church. But not only that, she developed it without much formal training, and at a very young age, dying at 24 years old.

So what is the Little Way?

Yesterday I picked up the local paper and poked through the section on the Red Sox. There was an article on Theo Epstein, who is one of the main guys in the Red Sox who makes the management decisions. “Theo Epstein confident” was the title. He is one of the youngest of these managers in all of baseball, but he is confident because he has a certain process, a little way, of managing that is new to baseball and considered genius. He relies on objective truth as much as possible, and not emotions and gut feelings. He is a big reason for the Red Sox winning two World Series over the past 5 years.

So, the reporters asked him, how about the trades they made to help the team? Trades are 50-50, he replied. Hit or miss. It’s all about the process. “Really we look back at the process. I like our process.”

Then the reporters asked him about his gut feeling for the team, if it was like the other teams that won World Series. “I try not to have too many gut feelings about the roster, because then if you rely solely on your gut, your gut changes,” he said.

He keeps his eye on the only thing that matters for the General Manager: “All that matters is: How good are we and how are we going to play in October? And I think we’re good; I think we’re really good.” The only important moments are right now and the final test.

In Therese’s Little Way, we recognize that our own opinions and decisions turn out 50-50, some good, some bad. It’s the best we can do. It’s all about the process we are in, about relying on Truth Himself: “I am the way, the truth, and the life.” (Jn 14:6) We don’t rely on our gut feelings, because those change, and so we are free to abandon ourselves to the only two important moments: now and the hour of death.

Therese’s Little Way is the Lord’s Way. When you are in this Way, you’ll like the Process and love to rely on the Process.

Then, you’ll always be confident.

Happy belated memorial of St. Therese!

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2 thoughts on “The Little Way Of Confidence

  1. It’s good to have a better look at how a Theo works; that way, my gut will stop missing Johnny Damon and maybe even Manny. What am I saying –no, it won’t! For crying out loud, I still miss Pedro and Nomar –and my gut would’ve been delighted if we’d ever gained Steve Garvey, Ron Cey, Lou Piniella and maybe Derek Jeter, too. (I said “maybe”!) But then who would we ever play against? The Theo process gained us 2 world series wins, and all the Red Sox of all time share in that. That’s a thought I had only today, after reading this post of yours.

    Little Therese was Theo-confident – in the Lord’s ultimate plan. Relying on her gut might’ve kept her always the little sister in the faith, but she kept her eye on His big picture and plunged in, abandoning herself, and became everyone’s big sister. We can safely abandon ourselves to her little way, knowing it pleases the Lord– also knowing, because of her audaciously confident promise to let fall a shower of “roses”, that she is personally on board with us. A win-win thing. (I couldn’t resist.)

    Your posts are unique; now, I may never think of Little Therese without also thinking of Theo and many ballplayers, hence I will be praying for any needed conversions. I’d like to jokingly say you’ve just ruined baseball for me, but no, you just made it even bettah.

  2. Carol, today I’m sure the confidence in the Theo process is undergoing a good testing!

    But doesn’t God give us big failures as well to test our faithfulness to the Way? Aren’t they gifts to give us humility?

    Hmm.. that could be another post ….

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