Beware of our ingratitude PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 22 July 2015 10:40

REFLECTION

BY FR. ROY CIMAGALA

It all started with our first parents. After being created in the divine image and likeness and endowed with the best of things, they eventually disobeyed God’s law and strayed away.

It’s a sad fact of life that continues to take place even up to now. We seem to get easily spoiled by whatever goodness, blessing or privilege is given to us. We need to be more prepared to cope with this proneness, cultivating the relevant attitude, skills and virtues.

The basic problem we have is that we tend to forget God and fail to thank him for whatever good we have and enjoy in life. As a result, we tend to make our own world, creating a bubble of life that sooner or later will just burst to nothingness.

Let’s remember that all goodness comes from him even if it’s also true that that goodness could also be a result of our own efforts. Nothing actually is truly good unless it somehow comes from God.

Our sense of gratitude is what keeps us always in touch with our Creator and the indispensable maintainer of our existence and source of whatever good we enjoy in life. We should do everything to sharpen that sense as we go along. It’s what reminds us of the basic relationship we have with him whom we tend to forget or take for granted.

Our greatest passion should be to be thankful to God always. If there’s some passion we have that is greater than this  then we can be sure that we would be treading on a dangerous path in life.

Let’s always remember what Christ told us about what God’s greatest commandment is for us. We should “love God with all our might and strength.” That love has to involve our whole being, not only our spiritual and intellectual part, but also and all the way to our feelings, emotions and passions.

And that’s simply because if our strongest passion is not love for God expressed in part by always being thankful to him, then it would be something else. And most likely it would be something that

not proper to us, but rather one that may offer us some human good that will eventually separate us from God.

This is what is happening these days with all the advantages and privileges afforded us by the new technologies. They offer us a lot of good, but if not related to God, they can become a competitor of God. They can become our god.

And the most subtle of this danger is when it is done in the field of religion itself. During the time of Christ, this was a rampant problem. The leading men got so stuck with their own religious laws and practices that they failed to recognize the God who became man. They were so convinced with the goodness of their laws and practices that they absolutized them, and made them their god, instead

God who became man.

Nowadays, we see a lot of self-righteous people who have their own version of what is true, good and beautiful, without referring it to the one who is all true, good and beautiful. They are now redefining things and building their own tower of Babel.

We should try our best to always keep God the center and focus of our life. We need to remind ourselves of this fundamental truth, because like toddlers who can go on with their childish ways unmindful of the people around, we too can go on with our many temporal affairs and concerns unmindful of God.

We should never forget that we cannot outgrow our   dependence on God, and that the more mature and more accomplished we become, the more dependent we ought to be on God. We need to remind ourselves of this truth constantly, making many deliberate acts of faith and thanksgiving during the day.

That’s why there is always a need also to cultivate the sense of spiritual childhood, that awareness that in the eyes of God we will always be children in need of his help and guidance.

Even if we are totally free and responsible for our life and actions, such freedom is no excuse for declaring independence from God who is the author, law and pattern, as well as goal of our freedom.

We need to educate ourselves to make many acts of thanksgiving all throughout the day, and feel in our flesh our complete dependence on God. Let’s not be ingrates who arrogate to ourselves what actually belongs to God.