Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Love is an act of the will

Many of us have probably heard the rather counter-cultural statement that "Love is an act of the will" and not a feeling as our culture seems to hold fast to.

I've understood this point (or at least I thought I did) for quite some time, but I've also recently realized that there's a second part to this idea that I may have overlooked before: Accepting love is an act of the will.

When I look to Christ, especially on the Cross or in the Eucharist, I know that He is totally choosing to give himself, Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity, to me. But, what I often overlook is whether or not I am fully accepting his love.

I came upon this realization recently when I was thinking about a new relationship I'm in. Practically out of nowhere, this amazing man comes into my life and start treating me well and being incredibly kind to me. My initial reaction was, "Seriously, what gives? I don't deserve any of this. Why are you being so nice to me?"

Then I realized that this is very similar to how I relate to God. I've always struggled with seeing myself as worthy of God's love -- so much so that makes it damn near impossible for Him to get into my heart. I just figured, "OK, not worthy of your love? Well, I'll just get along fine by myself then." This, of course, is pride masked as humility, all wrapped up nicely in despair and self-loathing.

So now that I have a truly amazing man waiting patiently for me to let him into my heart, just a little bit at a time, I've realized that all along God has been doing the same thing on an infinitely deeper scale.

Of course I'm not worthy of His love. None of us are. But that's the whole point. God wants every bit of our broken and battered little hearts so that He can reshape them into a beautiful, new creation.

We're not pieces of dung covered in snow.

We are broken souls remade in the fire of His Sacred Heart, but only if we choose to let Him in.

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Life is transient

Sometimes we have our eyes locked on what's immediately in front of us for so long that we don't notice all the subtle changes that amount into a major turning point.  I've observed lately in my own life and those around me that small, seemingly inconsequential events have eventually lead to bigger, if not major, life changes.

And maybe that's for our own good that we can't always tell where the constant struggle is taking us.Would I have the faith to keep trudging along if I knew what one of those end points was? Probably not. For even if I knew God were leading me to something glorious, I would still try to take short cuts to get there sooner.

No matter how much we think life is the same day in and day out, God is actually using the routine to train us for the future. Sometimes we face pain and suffering, sometimes we are graced with joy and peace, but above all, He always leads us towards a future full of Hope.

Change, no matter how painful, is not to be avoided for the sake of comfort. Comfort is what keeps us the same. Think about it: Comfort is achieved by shifting and adapting, by trying to assimilate that which is causing us discomfort, but is never a catalyst for change.