We Even Pray EgotisticallyThere is a world of difference between a man who is aware of himself, sitting on a hill and looking at a beautiful sunrise, and a man so enthralled with that very same sunrise that he forgets himself and becomes absorbed in the scene. In the first instance, the man is egocentric; he is in delusion at the center 0f his world, not God. When I see beauty everywhere, I experience joy and a sense of connection because my eyes are not on myself. The truth is that I am simply part of the whole. Everything does not depend on me. I am free to relax and enjoy the beauty of nature and the Spirit of God which permeates all when I am in the right place in the scheme of things when I give up my grand delusion. When Jesus says we must die to ourselves, He is not speaking about some pious self-sacrifice that makes us look holy; no, He has something much more radical in mind. The kind of inner transformation Jesus desires literally rips the rug up from under our feet and shatters our delusions, our world view.
I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me. (Galatians 2:20)
Disconnected From Nature and OthersWhy is modern man so anxious, nervous, out of sorts? Part of the reason is probably that many people barely see a blade of grass during their normal workday. Surrounded by concrete and glass, our innate self craves connection with the rest of the natural world, other people, the communion of saints (both living and dead), and at an even deeper level, God Himself. Instead, we live in isolated, man-made prisons which shut out other humans never mind other living creatures and God. Each person is at the center of their little artificial universe. That means that each of us has assumed the role of king or queen of our tiny kingdoms with everything depending on us. I was never designed to live alone like an island unto myself. Yet, in my pride, I cling tenaciously to my throne and crown. Only when I was completely depleted and shattered, only then did I resign and give God back His job. Only then did I surrender an egocentric point of view and embraced reality which is that God is at the center of the universe and I am simply part of the Mystical Body of Christ.
Silly?This is definitely absurd, but I only saw this fact after I surrendered and let go of control. I cannot find what is really important in life in self-created delusions, but I can discover the truth as I learn to live in harmony with a bigger universe than the one I create.
In the total expanse of human life there is not a single square inch of which the Christ, who alone is sovereign, does not declare, ‘That is mine!’ (Abraham Kuyper)Only Christ can save us from our delusions, from ourselves by filling us with His Holy Spirit and slowly transforming us so we can say with St. Paul, “No longer I who lives but Christ who lives in me.” St. John of the Cross, who lived in the 16th century, explains the inner process of becoming one with Christ.
I lose myself and remain, With my face on the Beloved inclined; All has come to rest, I abandon all my cares
Copyright 2019 Melanie Jean Juneau
About the Author
Melanie Jean Juneau is a mother of nine children who blogs at joy of nine9. Her writing is humorous and heart-warming; thoughtful and thought-provoking. Part of her call and her witness is to write the truth about children, family, marriage and the sacredness of life. Melanie is the administrator of ACWB, the Editor in Chief at CatholicLane, CatholicStand, Catholic365 , CAPC & author of Echoes of the Divine.