Today’s Gospel: Matthew 16:13-23
I sure do love a “spiritual high.” Do you know what I mean?
After a retreat, a conference, or a Mass sometimes I have a deep spiritual encounter. They are beautiful moments, these consolations, where we are granted small bits of heavenly knowledge by God.
I imagine this is what Peter must have felt like in the beginning of today’s reading. Granted special knowledge by God, he can declare unequivocally, “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God.” For a few moments, the sun must have shown a little brighter, the sky appear a little bluer, the breeze blow a little clearer. He was given the keys to the kingdom of heaven and granted the authority that comes with them!
It’s not long, though, before that sun dulls, the sky darkens, and the clouds blow over again. Peter, confident in his abilities at spiritual insight, answers Jesus with what he is sure must be the appropriate response. And it is exactly the wrong answer.
I can relate. Minutes after leaving a retreat; not long at home after a conference; or in the car on the way home from Mass, my own spiritual halo dulls and I am painfully reminded that “pride comes before a fall.” The results are humiliating.
Believing in my own intelligence, my own instincts, or my own efforts will never bring about a good end.
Reading spiritual books is good. Contemplating God is good. But it is always God who brings us to truth. It is God who forms our hearts.
Let’s approach Him with humility and thank Him for his goodness and mercy.
Do we approach God with humility? Or do we come to Him with our own methods and answers?
Jesus, grant me the grace to see You clearly, to hear You honestly, and to trust You completely. Grant that I might surrender my will to Yours.
Copyright 2018 Christine Cooney
Christine Cooney is a wife, mother, compulsive reader, and freelance writer living in Central Ohio. In her spare time she plays word games and takes pictures with her iPhone (@christine__co). She also likes superheroes, fancy pens, and the color blue. She blogs at Epiphanies of Beauty.
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