Fickle and fragile PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, 05 August 2015 10:50

REFLECTION

BY FR. ROY CIMAGALA

Let’s look into this unpleasant side of our life. I can assure you that it is not going to be a completely depressing experience. The sadness or disappointment such effort can bring cannot erase the fact that it will also occasion in us, if we put ourselves in the proper disposition, a gush of divine grace, a way of our own redemption.

Remember St. Paul´s ¨It´s when I am weak, that I am strong.¨ That´s the attitude to take here. May we know the practical consequences of such Pauline wisdom, and the requirements it asks of us!

We need to extricate ourselves from the stranglehold of our poorly-lit human reactions to our mistakes, failures and omissions, to our miseries, our fragility and fickleness, that tend to plunge us into desperation and helplessness.

Let´s allow our faith to flower into hope and then into charity where we can share the triumph of Christ, and where there can only be true and lasting joy and peace. Yes, God, and we with him, can spring victory from defeat, light from darkness, life from death.

First, we need to acknowledge our weaknesses and problems. These days, many of us often fail in this basic requirement. Like ostriches, we hide from them, deny their existence, and even act out an elaborate act of pretension and hypocrisy to cover them.

Worse scenarios follow, as we undertake a shameless effort of rationalizing our negative side, and with a mere act of our personal will, and sometimes with the collaboration of some consensus of like-minded people, we now say what is actually wrong as right, what is sinful as virtue.

St. Paul´s lament, expressed in the Letter to the Romans, gives us a glimpse of the reasons behind: ¨Though they knew God they did not honor him as God or give thanks to him, but they became futile in their thinking and their senseless minds were darkened.

¨Claiming to be wise, they became fools, and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images resembling mortal man or birds or animals or reptiles. Therefore God gave them up in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, to the dishonoring of their bodies among themselves, because they exchanged the truth about God for a

lie...”(1,21-25)

This latter ugly turn of things is now even supported by a vast complex of ideologies with a worldwide network of financial and propaganda machinery. Now we see vanity, pride, arrogance, greed, deception in person, in the flesh, not anymore as ideas or possibilities.

The idols of the ancient times that had eyes but could not see, had ears but could not hear, now seem transformed into articulate and glib salesmen of their treacherous doctrine and products. They now seem to be active and effective agents most able to contrive a lifestyle of their own making. They are now the gorgeous models for

everyone else to follow.

Standards and criteria have been altered not only in things peripheral but right down there in the roots. There´s no more God. We are just on our own. We don´t depend on absolute truths, but merely on personal ideas and consensual positions. Morality in all its levels, from the personal to the social and global, is now unhinged and is drifting aimlessly...

We need to be converted from this horrible state that can appear to us as sweet and nice, most reasonable and practical. For this to happen, we need to be humble, since humility is the way to the truth, to objectivity. It´s what enables us to go beyond the confines of the many conditionings working on us. It´s what prepares the ground for grace to take root in us.

Humility is a necessity for us. We are supposed to live it to the full since it has been meant for us since our creation, and more so, in our re-creation or our self-redemption with Christ.

We should not be deceived by its apparent debasement and its requirement of self-emptying, since these can only mean we are preparing ourselves to be filled up by nothing other than God himself, his wisdom and power, his everything.

That´s the most wonderful deal we can ever have, as expressed in that beautiful hymn of the Easter Exsultet: ¨Father, how wonderful your care for us! / How boundless your merciful love! / To ransom a slave, you gave away your Son. / O happy fault, O necessary sin of Adam, / which gained for us so great a Redeemer!¨