Friday, January 9, 2009

Present Yourself

As Mary and Joseph presented Christ in the temple, we too must present ourselves. In the church we have those opportunities of being presented. At Baptism, when we are given new birth and begin are journey as children of God. At the First Communion, we present ourselves to receive what is the completion of our Christian initiation, The Body and Blood of Our Lord Jesus Christ, "the source and summit" of our spiritual lives. At Reconciliation we present ourselves as sinners seeking God's forgiveness and absolution. At Confirmation we present ourselves to be sealed by the Holy Spirit, to receive the promises of His gifts, to be strengthened in love. On our wedding day we present ourselves as man & woman to be united to Christ and each other. On the day or our ordination we present ourselves to become members the priesthood of Christ to be "Persona Christi Capitis" to serve in the person of Christ. But there is yet another way that we can present ourselves. We can present ourselves to those in need. We can sacramentally bring Christ to anybody we meet for it is in our being that we are not only a sign of God's love but also God's love itself. We can present ourselves to those who are confused, lonely, lost, broken, angry, depressed, self destructive, bitter, searching for answers. We can present ourselves to family, co-workers, members of our Church, anywhere in the public square where injustice exits and righteousness does not. We have been sent to present ourselves to a lost world, in need of True Light, the Good News, in the person Jesus Christ.

Again Here is the Litany of Conversion with a few more verse added:

United in the mystery of the conversion of Paul, we pray for the grace of conversion in our own life:
R. Lord, Give me the Grace of Conversion

Lord Jesus,

When I look at my life from the starting point of my own insufficiences, instead of from the fact of your compassion, grace, and love for me. R.

When I would prefer to live by my own thoughts and my own understanding instead of by your Truth which alone can set me free. R.

When I would rather brood over what annoys me than turn myself over to you always invite me to come to you. R.

When I obsess over self-absorption, complacency, and self-assertiveness. R.

When I get dejected about my sin, not because it offends you, but because it prevents me from being able to take delight in myself. R.

Whenever I live in a dualistic way, as if my faith and "my real life" are two separate things, R.

When I am deceived into thinking that my happiness depends on something in the future instead of what you give me in the present moment, R.

When discouragement and shame make hard for me to be faithful, R.

When I become distraught over the evil I would commit if left to myself, forgetting that I do not live according to myself but that I live in you, R.

When self-doubt and fear seem to have the last say, R.

When I miss the point of my fragility, a gift you give me so that I will always be prompted to rely on you, R.

When I am inclined to interpret my problems as punishments and my miseries as being abandoned by God, R.

When impenetrability takes over my life, making me resistant to your beauty and all the little ways you ordain yourself to me, R.

When I get distracted by my feelings, my emotions, my passions, my regrets, R.

When I get duped into thinking that I must fix myself up in order to have a relationship with you, forgetting that you come to me with your love just the way I am, R.

When I treat my faith like some abstract answer to be sought instead of as a loving Presence to be affirmed, R.

When I get discouraged by chronic or recurring sins in my life, R.

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