9 December 2018
Second Sunday of Advent
It has not been lost on me that I have not written a great deal over the last few months. Every time I wanted to write, I always found myself back in a rut of disinterest and admittedly, laziness. Many changes have also occurred in my life, and at times, too many ideas have been spurred by these shifts in the personal and interior landscape which overwhelmed me.
I must also confess that I have become disappointed by what seems like a lack of progress in my spiritual life. But then I look back at my notes and find a glimmer of hope that what I wrongly believe as failure after failure has in fact been a step after step movement to where I am supposed to be. Indeed, progress is harder to see when one is now further off from the shore – not that I am far off, really. Before, the shore of conversion the reference point of one’s journey into sea. Now it is only but the horizon that appears from a distance making it difficult to know how far one has really set off, and if he has actually set off in the right direction.
I rummage through my scribbles – phrases, paragraphs, and words I jotted down – and see hopeful reminders.
In the 28th of August, there are these words: Simplicity of the soul…a simple soul approaches God faster and more efficiently. Attachments weight down our flight to the Divine. Resentments chain us from rising. Fear pierces our wings.
The following day, after a battle with old wounds and memories of a past life which resurfaced, I wrote: Christ takes things one day at a time. God made everything one day at a time. Indeed, the Father created everything in order; the light on the first day, man and animals later on. There is a design, and logic to everything. Nothing is ever left to chance.
Dear M, what I mean is that the simple soul lives in the present. That should be our calling. Our vocation is the present. Our vocation is now. We are to live dwelling in the mistakes of our youth unless we want to fall into regret, discouragement, and despair. Yes, we learn from them but then remember in awe God’s mercy. Even after all of “that”, we are still His children.
And if we are to live anxiously wondering if what we have done is ever enough to “appease” God, then may find ourselves falling into the depths of doubt, sunken by scrupulosity, and anchored down by anxiety. It is truly just pride, an inordinate desire to have complete control of our lives. What a foolish desire for it can never be satisfied by ourselves. We never have full control of our lives.
The simple soul sees the truth better than anyone else. The simple soul – without any trace of guile, of pride, of false humility, of attachment, or of fear – freely abandons himself to the present, and to the presence of God. And while God indeed encompasses past, present, and future, our lives are in the present. Refusing to live in the now is escaping where God wants us to be. He wants us to love, not to “had loved” or “to love”. You shall love God…shall love your neighbor. He does not say, you shall love God tomorrow. He does not say, it is good you loved your neighbor, your enemies yesterday. He meets as in the plain of the present.
The call to holiness is a call to be in the present, especially at a time when most our dwelling in the past or worrying about the future. And if the present is uncomfortable or challenging, then the more we should be in it. The Word of God is not a thing of the past. It is alive in the present, and waits for each and every one of us.
M, pray that we become simple souls with a vocation for the now. Live now. Be daring now! Love now! Be holy now.