Oh, I would love to be perfect! I'd love to make a commitment and stick to it--all the way to the end--for once! I hate that I slip and slide when I say I'm going to stand firm and climb. What makes me do this? What makes you do this? Is it because we're Only Human?
Well, it's true: you and I are human. But we are more than that. We are humans with 'privileges.' Spiritual privileges. We believe that we can do better. We have faith that we can do better.
And where does our belief come from?
Grace. And Grace comes from God.
Catholics call it Actual grace, those everyday pushes from God to keep going. We may ignore them. We may say, "Not now. Maybe tomorrow." Well, God will be there tomorrow, too; still pushing us. Because He never leaves us. He is there to lift us, help us up after we fall.
So, I will continue to make commitments. I will be relentless in my attempts to stick to them. And so will you, because we are blessed by our Faith, that invisible strength that God gives us. And we need it most when we're failing, or stumbling, or falling into despair. We need it when we find it so hard to let go of what we know in our hearts we need to release.
We need it to love as we should. We need it to come to the aid of others. We need it to become aware of what is true in this world, and what is not true. And ultimately, we need it to stay on track in working out our own salvation.
Therefore, my beloved, as you have always obeyed, so now, not only as in my presence but much more in my absence, work out your own salvation with fear and trembling; for God is at work in you, both to will and to work for his good pleasure. Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and perverse generation, among whom you shine as lights in the world, holding fast the word of life, so that in the day of Christ I may be proud that I did not run in vain or labor in vain. (Phil. 2:12–16).
Copyright 2015 Kaye Park Hinckley
Photo by Kakisky (2010) via morguefile.com.
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