In the previous meditation, you pondered which kingdom you wish to be a part of. Hopefully the answer is the Kingdom of Christ. But how deep is that commitment? How far are you willing to go in order to enter Christ’s Kingdom?
Some people desire to be members of Christ’s Kingdom, but “desire” is about as far as they are willing to go. Others desire and also take some definite actions, but these actions are conditioned and limited. Finally, there are some who hold nothing back. They are ready and willing to do anything and everything necessary in order to give the greatest glory to God and to save their souls by fully embracing all that is involved in being a member of Christ’s Kingdom.
Ponder how far you are willing to go.
Do you desire only but fail to act?
Do you desire and act, but only so far?
Or are you ready and willing to do all and give all for Christ? Ponder these questions seriously. (Silent Reflection)
Using your imagination, consider some excessive attachment you have. Maybe it’s sinful, maybe it’s not. But try to pick something that occupies much of your time, thinking, affections, desires, energy, etc. What is it? What attachment do you have to an excessive degree?
- First, say a prayer that God will help you to call this attachment to mind. (Pray now)
- Then, pray for the grace to see this attachment in the way God sees it. (Again, pray for this grace now)
- Lastly, say a prayer that God will give you the grace to understand what His will is and to choose only that which will give Him the most glory.
After sufficient prayer and time, consider now three different approaches a person can take. Do so, objectively, by imagining a person who received a very large amount of money. The money is enough to suffice for the rest of their life and to enable a luxurious lifestyle. But this person deeply loves God and wants to do what God wants. So what should they do with this money? Money itself is not sinful. But having money can result in an unhealthy attachment to it and can cause a person to rely more on the money than on God.
Person One: This person decides that it is best to surrender the money to God and to seek His will for its use. They know in their heart that it is what is right, and they desire to do so. But they begin to mindlessly use the money. And they put off making a decision about what God wants. They keep thinking about it, but do nothing concrete to either discern what God wants done with it or how to use it as He wants. They desire God’s will, but they do little or nothing to choose it and live it in action.
Person Two: This person has all the qualities of Person One, regarding a desire to do God’s will and to use the money only as God wants. But they go a step further. They pray about it. They give some of it away. They resolve to use it only for God’s glory. But they still hold onto it and remain confused about what to do. They fail to look deeply at this question and, day after day, resolve to try again. But they make little progress and hold onto the money.
Person Three: This person also has the same qualities as the above two regarding a desire to do God’s will and to use the money as God wants. But this person goes much further. This person sees clearly that the money is neither good nor bad. It can neither fulfill them by keeping it nor sadden them by giving it away. On the deepest level, they have achieved an authentic “holy indifference” to the money. If God wants them to keep it, that’s fine. If God wants them to give it away, that’s fine. Furthermore, this person decides to first actively discern God’s will and then to do it, no matter what it is. Thus, they enter into a time of discernment. Upon the completion of their discernment, they make a decision. Upon making a decision, they fully, wholeheartedly and joyfully act on the will of God.
Notice with the third person, the choice to keep the money or give it away is not the central spiritual focus. Rather, the focus is 1) to know that which gives God the greatest glory; 2) to let go of any preference of their own; 3) to have no hesitancy in acting on whatever they honestly discern to be God’s will.
Using the above examples, consider your personal attachment(s) and then consider which person you are more like. Pray once again for grace to see and for grace to know how you can personally become Person Three. What do you need to do? (Silent Reflection)
Featured Image: Photo by Milada Vigerova on Unsplash
Introduction to Meditations for Ordinary Time
- Baptism of the Lord
- Two Standards
- Three Classes of Men
- Calling of Apostles
- Wedding at Cana
- Cleansing the Temple
- Sermon on the Mount
- Calming the Storm
- Walking on Water
- The Apostles were Sent to Preach
- Conversion of Mary Magdalene
- How Christ Fed the Five Thousand
- Transfiguration of Christ
- Resurrection of Lazarus
- Supper in Bethany
- Three Ways of Humility