Monday, July 13, 2015

Burned out?

WE all know that life has more to offer than what we can manage. There are surprises both of the pleasant and welcome ones as well as the terribly unwelcome ones. There are heavy pressures and insoluble predicaments. We have to be ready for these eventualities, though we also know we cannot be truly ready enough.
 
We have to learn to live with this fact of life and strengthen our conviction, based on our Christian faith, that there’s such thing as divine providence. God always governs all of his creation, and in his own mysterious ways directs all things to himself. If this is part of our bedrock belief, then we would be open, ready and game with anything in life.

A great part of his providence is beyond our understanding. What we know is that it is at once all-wise, all-powerful, all-just and all-merciful. If we would just be open to this truth about his providence, I suppose we would be ok even if along the way we commit all sorts of mistakes and even sins.

God knows what to do with our blunders. And if they happen, it’s because at least God knows how to draw good from them. Everything somehow happens for a purpose in the ever dynamic providence of God.

As St. Paul would put, To them that love God, all things work together unto good, to such as, according to his purpose, are called to be saints.” (Rom 8,28) These words of St. Paul should be the very kernel of the attitude we ought to have toward anything that can happen in life.

Of course, such divine providence does not take away our freedom which we can use unfortunately to go against his will and ways. In spite of the infinite wisdom and mercy of God in his providence, we can still manage to go against it.

Thus, Christ talked about a sin that cannot be forgiven—the sin against the Holy Spirit, when we “we speak against the Holy Spirit.” (cfr Mt 12,32). The Holy Spirit is the God who is sent to us to sanctify us. He is actually always around prompting us what to think, choose, say and do.

We have to remember that God completely gives himself to us. He is not sparing in this. He is now with us in the Holy Spirit. In a sense, he is all there for the taking. It’s really just up to now how to take advantage of this reality.

Thus, we are told that the proper attitude we ought to have toward the Holy Spirit is that of docility. But for this to take place, we also have to do our part. We need to learn to pray, to live always in the presence of God, to develop the virtues, to learn the doctrine of our faith so that we would know how to deal with the Holy Spirit, to avail of the sacraments, etc.

It also helps that humanly speaking, we develop a good sense of humor, and a practical sense of how to defuse the pressures, like indulging in some healthy hobbies and sports, or doing some physical exercises that can lighten the mind and spirit.

In the end, when things are just beyond us to cope, we have to learn how to live abandonment in the hands of God who knows what to do with all of our predicaments. In this, it might be good to meditate on that scene of the agony of Christ in the garden of Gethsemane.

There he prays most earnestly to his Father, and begs him to let “this cup pass by me.” He already has done a lot to accomplish his mission of saving us. Still there is one more thing yet to be done.

Later on, he kind of rectified himself: But not my will but yours be done.” And with that, he proceeded to face his arrest, passion, crucifixion and death. He gave himself completely to the cruelty of men and offered his life, only to resurrect on the third day.

We have to see in this scene the template of how we are to behave when faced with insoluble predicaments. We should not be afraid of the cross in whatever form it takes. When we have done everything that we could and still the predicaments remain, we just have to face and embrace it the way Christ did.


Its in that spirit that we can expect to rise also together with Christ. We can actually have as many resurrections as death-causing problems in our life!

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