Friday, September 5, 2014

Summer Lessons in Humility: Abandoning Ambitions To Christ

“Few souls understand what God would accomplish in them if they were to abandon themselves unreservedly to Him and if they were to allow His grace to mold them accordingly.” – St. Ignatius of Loyola
I’ve been attending daily Mass as much as possible this summer and I can honestly say that it has been the absolute best way that I can start each day. Sitting in the silence of Old St. Mary Church while the rest of the city is rising from sleep, hearing a few words of encouragement in the homily and receiving the Eucharist is the perfect “Big Three”.

One of the presiders at Mass once included this important fact in his homily: “As Catholics the most common topics discussed are prayer and sexual morality, but we almost never talk about the importance of honesty, generosity or humility.” Thinking back on this notion, I feel that this summer has really taught me a lesson in the need for humility.

As a young adult it can be scary getting ready to start off on your own. Discovering your calling in life can be a great challenge. Often times we get impatient with our current life situations and, feeling abandoned by God, try to take matters in our own hands.  We assume that God didn’t feel like answering our “needs”, so we think "I'll just take care of things by myself.” I discovered that I had been saying things of this sort myself and I know that I am not alone.

The temptation for young adults is to feel like we are in control of our own destiny.  When we encounter a difficult situation we think we can just pass it over or cut corners to get what we think we need. This is what society has told us, and unfortunately, I listened all too often.

As fall approaches I’ve learned that I can do nothing when I rely on my own power. I’ve come to understand that if I achieve anything at all, it is not because of my great determination or intense work ethic, but that God has shown such great mercy to me, a poor sinner, and allowed me to pursue and meet goals. I can do nothing without Him and that includes career moves and life decisions.

Humility does indeed need to be talked about more often. With a society that fills our heads with self-righteousness and pride we can turn to Christ for His strength and offer Him control of all of our ambitions. God knows what we need and when we need it and will never refuse anyone who gives everything over to His hands.

Pope Benedict XVI sums it up the best in this quote-

“If we let Christ into our lives, we lose nothing, nothing, absolutely nothing of what makes life free, beautiful, and great. No! Only in this friendship are the doors of life opened wide. Only in this friendship is the great potential of human existence truly revealed.”

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