Saturday, March 27, 2010
The shepherds heralded Jesus' arrival as they lay in their fields. It was as though they were captivated by the One Shepherd, He, who would truly shepherd His people. Isaiah had written long ago "We had all gone astray like sheep, each following his own way." Now the One who would leave the other 99 to find the lost sheep was among us. In my spiritual journey I have reached a place where it was easy to discern the sinfulness of the world and of my own sinfulness. Through that understanding I am attempting to make a point here: the world is divided, sinful, and in much need. If you know me personally, or have read enough of my posts, you will see that message over and over. It can be easily misconstrued to mean that I believe that I possess a piety and self righteousness that somehow places me above the fray. That could not be further from the truth. I could be dismissed as being a cynical despot who thinks all society is doomed, and that too would not be true. There is, however, a necessity for somebody, somehow, to be a voice in the wilderness, to speak in today's vernacular -"to tell it like it is" There are many dimensions to our faith. We have over the past 40 years been over emphasizing one aspect of it; that God loves us and we should feel good about that. That is the Resurrected Christ without the Passion and Death. If we leave our faith to this one sided dimension then it is easy to be swallowed into the world of secular beliefs or what is called Deism - belief in a God who created the world but has since remained indifferent to it. This kind of Christianity is predominant in America. We subscribe to a life of materialism and self indulgence and a one dimensional God is the counter weight to that by which we can relieve our guilt. We add up things, like going to church, praying, doing the rosary, reading Sacred Scripture and we feel good. This is the mechanical means of our justification. In this society we are divided by sin. We are called to holiness and must conquer sin and that means doing battle with the secular world whose values come from the Evil One. I am merely pointing out that we are scattered and not implying that's how it should be or that it cannot change. Hope comes from Christ, the Good Shepherd. Christ the Gatherer. He is the Deliverer, but we must heed his voice and not the voice of the world. Jesus said that we cannot serve two masters, "for we shall love one and hate the other, we will be devoted to one and despise the other." As we journey to His Passion, Death and Resurrection, we must all ask ourselves who am I devoted to? who do I despise? Is the world our first love?
Posted by Paul Bernacchio at 5:50 AM