Wednesday, August 13, 2014

“Let us never fall into the mistake of dreaming that we are persecuted whenever we are contradicted.”

Think not those faithful who praise all thy words and actions, but those who kindly reprove thy faults. - Socrates

Gospel Text: (MT 18:15-20)
Jesus said to his disciples:
“If your brother sins against you,
go and tell him his fault between you and him alone.
If he listens to you, you have won over your brother.
If he does not listen,
take one or two others along with you,
so that every fact may be established
on the testimony of two or three witnesses.
If he refuses to listen to them, tell the Church.
If he refuses to listen even to the Church,
then treat him as you would a Gentile or a tax collector.
Amen, I say to you,
whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven,
and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.
Again, amen, I say to you, if two of you agree on earth
about anything for which they are to pray,
it shall be granted to them by my heavenly Father.
For where two or three are gathered together in my name,
there am I in the midst of them.”

Which is easier to do, to correct or to be corrected?

If you do the correction, charity is needed. Anger results in harsh words and might do more harm than good. Impartiality makes the correction sound. But there are people who don't correct due to laziness or fear to risk losing the affection of the loved one. Some parents do not take up this challenge of correcting their children because they don't want to hurt the feelings of their children. This is why so many find it much easier to choose what we wrongly call “Christian charity”, which is nothing but pure escapism, comfort, cowardice, and false tolerance.

What happens to the one who is being corrected? It is not easy for him. It is not pleasant to be confronted with one's faults. His pride can keep him from acknowledging his mistakes and sometimes a scapegoat gets the blame.

Owning up to our faults is an example of humility which brings us to holiness. Saints never took pride in their holiness, but they constantly admitted their sins and confessed them to a priest. They never considered themselves better than anyone else because they experienced God's love even in their sinful state. They realized that without the grace of God, they too would be the worst of sinners, capable of just about anything.

To correct and to be corrected works for our benefit and by being open to it we can practice mercy and humility. Remember this truth today. Let it fill you with joy and peace. Your heavenly Father is completely committed to you. He has claimed you, and he will never let you go.

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