Catholic Soup is a food for thought blog based website designed to provide Catholic insight through personal experience.

Monday, July 28, 2014

Crucifying the Flesh

Ever since man was created by God in the beginning, man has a direct calling and destiny to be one with God. This means that we are called to know and love God in his fullness. Before the fall of man, Adam and Eve knew God in his fullness, they were in a perfect and holy relationship with God. The consequence of sin was a rift between man and God. Man can no longer know God in a perfect and complete way all because of sin. Today, we are baptized by water and made members of the Catholic Church. It is at that very moment of baptism that we are given a holy, perfect and sacred relationship with God. However, just like Adam our sin hinders our relationship with God and it prevents us having that intimate relationship with God the Father. Now in order to know how sin keeps us from God, it is important to understand what Sin really is. Sin is a action or an offense against God and his divine love for us. When we sin, we are acting against God in disobedience to his love. We in our hearts are professing that we don't need God in our lives therefore we are rejecting his love for us. The thing with sin is that it doesn't place anything within us, but rather it strips out everything that is already in us. We are hurt by sin and our personalty becomes dull. We have no energy, depression, we might feel weak, lost, confused and even tired of our own lives. In sin, man is supplying to his passions and his desires. I want this, I want that and when we want it we give in to ourselves and usually follow through. The problem is that we are always looking for things that don't make us happy and if they do it's only for a moment. When we talk about crucifying the flesh, it's important to understand that we should do this daily and not just for a couple days. Avoid sin and even the near occasion of sin! That means know your weakness and your own struggles. We have to know the affects of sin and what they can do to us. More importantly sin can separate us from God for eternity. Second, sin puts a blockade between us and God so know we can't ever know him fully on earth, and Third, we can't ever know ourselves and who we are if we are trapped by sin. If I don't know myself and who I am, then how can I try to understand someone else in a relationship, boyfriend or girlfriend even in marriage? So we should know the effects of sin and avoid it everyday. I shared a story of some Alaskan wolves:

If the owner of the land spots a wolf, his primary objective becomes to kill that wolf because now that wolf is a predator and a threat to his home, his family and his livestock. So what he does is kill a goat, takes it's blood, places it on the blade of a knife and allows it to freeze. He does it about 7-8 times before there is a thick shell of frozen blood. So he walks out to the forest and places the knife in the snow with the blade up and walks away. The wolf smell the blood from miles out and approaches slowly at first because he's a little curious. He takes his first lick of the blood and likes it. So he licks it more and more until his tongue becomes numb by the frost. As the wolf licks more he slices his tongue, and enjoys fresh blood not realizing its his own. Soon enough the wolf will leave and die of blood loss. The fact is that sin, kills us without us even know it. It harms us without us even knowing the damage we are placing on ourselves, our hearts, our bodies, our spirits and our souls. So the message is to crucify the flesh, abandon all sin, live in the spirit and not the flesh. Don't give into your passions or your desires but give into the spirit of God. Saint Paul tell us in Romans that we shouldn't live in the sins of the flesh, but rather the fruits of the Spirit. By our creation and baptism, we are called to live in the spirit not the flesh.
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