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

Monday, August 18, 2014

The Abandonment

In today's gospel, there's a reminder for us to leave what we truly desire so that we can follow Christ. It's called the abandonment, and its not easy. We hear in the gospel, a young man who asks the Lord what he has to do to obtain the Kingdom of God. Right away the Lord tells him to follow the commandments, but what is interesting his Jesus' focus on the those commandments that have to do with our neighbor. The young man said to the Lord, "I have observed all of these, what else do I lack?" Jesus tells him to sell what he has and give to the poor. The interesting part for me is at once, the young man walked away sad because he knew he had many possessions. The sense of abandonment can be hard for us and as we read, even for the young man. Jesus tell us that it is not so much of leaving the things we love, but recognizing what it is that keeps us from Him. What consumes you in your life, your phone, computer, relationships, these things can keep us from God in terms of time and so Jesus calls us in the gospel to abandon those things and let go of what really keeps us from Him.The joy is that in this abandoment of possessions, there is true happiness because we learn and train our hearts that God is worthy of all our time and all our possession.   

Jesus, help me to recognize those things that keep me from you, and give me strength so that I can look past those possessions and seek the cross. I give you permission to take away those things that keep me from knowing.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

The Beggar: Fill Your Cup

Here at the mission house, the usual call for morning prayer is at 5:30am. This marks the start of a meditation period that is widely used in Capuchin Friaries across the globe. This morning during my meditation, I had an interesting experience with Jesus being present to us on the cross. As I held my coffee in my hand gazing directly up at the cross. I remember being attentive and in full focus. I was more in tune because we'll coffee on a white Nike shirt is not a good thing, and I was being aware of the burning sensation on my hands from the hot mug. The point being is that I was reminded of the warmth and the radiance  that God can offer us just by looking at the cross of our Lord Jesus. As I drank my coffee pretty soon I had none and the reality if the moment was that I was empty, and not only was I empty but I was also broken. I pictured myself a poor man, looking up at the only source of happiness with a plea for mercy, love and grace. I felt like my cup had to be filled with a love that can't be replaced and in a sense, replaced with a coffee far greater then any coffee. This morning I envisioned myself a poor man, begging Christ on the cross to fill my cup once again, and not only fill it, but overflow it with love.

If we think about it we will always seek satisfaction, it's what we do as humans. Is that bad? No. It's just disappointing to know that some satisfaction is not true satisfaction and we can't ever be truly happy with a false sense of happiness.  It isn't real. So with an empty cup, a cup seeking possessions, money, fame, fortune and materialistic things, that cup will always be empty because they don't make us happy. What we should do is ask Christ to fill our cups with a love that is greater than all things, even our own faults. If that means presenting ourselves as a poor beggar, who seeks nothing but happiness.