Tuesday, April 03, 2007

Finding your center

A couple of snips from the Pope's address this past Palm Sunday from CNA. (Emphasis mine.)

The [Palm Sunday] procession “is also an expression of our 'yes' to Jesus and of our readiness to follow Him wherever He may take us,” said the Holy Father but, he added, “what does ‘following Christ’ actually mean? ... It is,” he explained, “a fundamental decision to take no account of utility and profit, career and success, as the ultimate aim of our lives, but to recognize truth and love as authentic criteria. It is a choice between living only for ourselves, and giving ourselves for something greater. In following Him, we enter the service of truth and love. In losing ourselves we find ourselves again.”

And again:
Benedict XVI concluded by recalling that “with the cross Jesus opened wide the door to God, the door between God and mankind. Now that door is open. But from the other side the Lord knocks with His cross, he knocks at the doors of the world, at the doors of our hearts, which are so often ... closed to God. And He speaks to us more or less like this: if the proofs that, in His creation, God gives you of His existence do not convince you to open yourself to Him, if the words of Scripture and the message of the Church leave you indifferent, then look at me, your Lord and your God. This is the appeal that, at this moment, we let penetrate our hearts.”
Merging the first and the second highlighted parts produces a truly powerful statement. You wind up with something like, "Take no account of utility and profit, career and success, as the ultimate aim of [your] lives, but [...] recognize truth and love as authentic criteria; if the proofs that, in His creation, God gives you of His existence do not convince you to open yourself to Him, if the words of Scripture and the message of the Church leave you indifferent, then look at me, your Lord and your God." Look indeed at what He, our Lord and God did - utility and profit, career and success he threw away as so much dust. But look and see the glorious end that lay at that road that seemed so much folly to the eyes of man. "[W]e proclaim Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and foolishness to Gentiles, but to those who are called, Jews and Greeks alike, Christ the power of God and the Wisdom of God. (1 Cor 1:23-24)"