Friday, July 23, 2010

Walking with Jesus

In Maureen Conroy's Book titled: The Discerning Heart: Discovering a Personal God, she writes "Growth in relationship with God occurs through mutual self-revelation." The Greek philosophers were only half right in their quest to know truth. Know thyself is indeed an important component to the spiritual life. Modern man spends little time in that pursuit, in the quest of self-examination. The rare exception occurs when one slips off the the road of life or crashes into something. When failure, a personal disaster, accidentally or intentionally, or life threatening illness befalls a person, then they begin to ask themselves who am I. How did I get here? Our life here, our existence in truth, is relational, and it is best understood in terms of our relationship with our Creator and His relationship to us.

I like to use the image of doors. If we look at a door in a philosophical sense, the idea of a door, we develop some concepts: a door opens, a door opens into one space and out to another, it is both an entrance and an exit, there are two sides of a door.When a door is closed, only one side is knowable, the side that you are on. In translating that image to our lives, and to our Faith, we can see that it is necessary to explore some important areas of understanding:

1. How do I discover God's revelation, His hidden mysteries?

2. How does it take place? How does He reveal Himself?

3. What are the means to knowing it? What do I have to do?

4. Will I even understand it when it happens?

Conversely, the other side of the door:

1. How much of myself have I shown God?

2. How do I fully and openly reveal myself to Him?

3. What obstacles are in place that hinders me from revealing my true self?

4. Do I consider how I react or growth as a result of His Divine revelation to me?

Now this is getting complex. Without going into a great deal of explanation, I would say we need a means of tracking the daily occurrences in which we encounter God and ourselves and we also need a neutral but skilled party who can guide us.

The first means was developed by St. Ignatius of Loyola and is known as the Examen - for a good explanation click here: The Examen Prayer. The second means would be to go on a retreat, and with good spiritual direction explore how you can better equip yourself in your quest to walk with Jesus.

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