REFLECTION: Let’s not get used to sin! PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 17 December 2011 14:22

BY FR. ROY CIMAGALA

With the celebration of the Solemnity of the Immaculate Conception of Mary on December 8, we are given another reminder of a basic truth about ourselves that has been all but forgotten.

Our Lady, given to us by Christ himself to be our own Mother and our most powerful intercessor, reminds us of who we really are and how we are supposed to be. Like her, we are supposed to be sinless, though for us that can only happen when we finally arrive at our ultimate destination of heaven.

Just the same, we have to understand that at the beginning, we were supposed to be sinless. The same also at the end of time. Thus, in the Eucharistic preface of the feast’s Mass, we read the following about our Lady who is the perfect model for us:

“Full of grace, she was to be a worthy mother of your Son, your sign of favor to the Church at its beginning, and the promise of its perfection as the bride of Christ, radiant in beauty.

“Purest of virgins, she was to bring forth your Son, the innocent lamb who takes away our sins. You chose her from all women to be our advocate with you and our pattern of holiness.”

These beautiful words, so meaningful to us, should have no other effect than to make us develop a great love and devotion to our Lady, our Mother. They should strongly prompt us that she does nothing other than to give Jesus to us, Jesus who is everything to us.

They should also prod us to do everything to fight against sin. Nowadays, there are many pieces of evidence pointing to people getting used to sin, such that sin has become normal or that the sense of sin is waning.

Many people are falling into vices and other bad habits, worsened by the fact that these can now be easily hidden and rationalized. The tricky part is that many of these temptations and occasions of sin can also be moments of good possibilities. It now really depends on the integrity of the person to choose which path to take.
But what I see is that in many people there is practically no more fear of God nor of sin. They, even the young ones, seem to have become emptied of conscience. Their sense of right and wrong, good and evil, just follows any way the wind blows—it’s so arbitrary!

Many seem to be losing the sense of meaning and purpose in life. They swing from boredom to reckless adventures and idle gimmicks just to fill up their time.
The Internet is infested with porn. I just learned that many people carry with them downloaded porn in their cell phones. The new technologies have become the new scourge of our time, because many people are ill-prepared to use them. They are like little children playing with matches.

There is now an epidemic of self-abuse, substance abuse, all kinds of delinquency, negligences and irresponsibilities. The picture is really bad and rotten!

We should not allow this situation to go on without doing anything to correct it. I know it’s not going to be easy. But there’s always hope. St. Paul has reassured us that “where sin has abounded, the grace of God has abounded even more.”

We need to return to God through Mary. She is the one who will make things easy for us. She will put our mind and heart in their proper places, that is, focused on God and filled with love for him and for others.

She will help us with her example of humility, simplicity and obedience how to handle our weaknesses, how to fight in our ascetical struggles, how to be in God’s presence all the time, how to develop virtues.

She will teach us how to deal with temptations, how to be totally sincere as to acknowledge always our weakness and to never stay away from God. She will teach us how to deal with the wiles of the devil, the world and our own flesh and deceitful mind and heart.

This clear and strong relationship with God and with others, sustained by this Marian devotion, is basic and indispensable, because without it there’s no chance our spiritual and moral life can ever take wing. We would always be handicapped when that relation with God is weak.

We should never take for granted this crucial Marian dimension of our Christian life! Mary is the surest, safest, shortest path to Jesus.