Friday, January 15, 2016

Here's a thought ...

On conversion and healing ...

Someone who is free of his infirmity is ...

"someone who no longer attracts attention ..." - Adrienne Von Speyer

That's it.

That's what has been wrong here.  Conversion story blogs keep picking at the sores - the wounds.  For ten years I've been dancing around this stuff, calling attention to my wounds, my sins, my disabilities.  Licking my wounds, as it were.  Protesting too much.  Then convincing myself that I have something to say about this or that or the other thing.  Seeking and attracting attention - to myself.

Some bloggers do that a lot.

I just saw a thing from a guy whose evangelization and apologetics is more or less based upon his conversion story and pursuit of some sort of online ministry - he was quoted at length, writing about how imperative it is for Christians to judge; because everyone says 'do not judge' when some one calls another one out... and although Christ said 'do not judge' we always seem to do it anyway.  Some apologists - much like this guy - spend a great deal of time explaining why they are correct in judging, suggesting that "not to judge is not to love."  Oddly enough - this same fellow misjudged me once.  A good lesson BTW, since I have misjudged many in my life ... but I digress.

Ones conversion experience does not justify the feeling that one is one of the "elect". - Pope Benedict

Someone who is free of his infirmity ...

One has to want to be free.  One has to want to be healed.  One has to believe, or at least hope God will free him - all of that is true.  All of that takes time, and it definitely takes humility.  Humility often comes through hard falls, hard knocks, harsh judgments endured - some true, others maybe a penance supplying for hidden faults unknown to others.  Humiliations are the stepping stones to humility, as Mother Teresa said.

The humble man cannot judge.  He can't look down on others.  For shame - actually humility in another guise - leads the humble man to no longer attract attention to himself, much less judge the conduct of others.

When we fall into that trap of setting ourselves up as judge and calling attention to ourselves by calling out the faults of others, we can still repent, we can still begin again - while there is still 'time'  ... we can finally come to understand that everything is a grace, that it is sheer gift ...
As the pope stated in his book:  "For as long as we are alive it is always possible to start over, all we have to do is let Jesus embrace us and forgive us." 
"There is medicine, there is healing, we only need to take a small step toward God, or at least express the desire to take it," he continued, saying "a tiny opening is enough."

Best advice:  Do not judge.


  1. The more we let Jesus into our lives and let him transform us the less we judge others. In fact we will likely feel more merciful and loving to others.

  2. "But with me it is a very small thing that I should be judged by you or by any human court. In fact, I do not even judge myself. For I am not aware of anything against myself, but I am not thereby acquitted. It is the Lord who judges me. Therefore do not pronounce judgment before the time, before the Lord comes, who will bring to light the things now hidden in darkness and will disclose the purposes of the heart. Then each one will receive his commendation from God." I Cor 4:3-5

    To me, this is one of the great moral mysteries of our faith. Right up there with God using sin for good and dying to oneself leading to the fullness of life. This passage, and others about judging right and wrong but not people, make me think we are to be like judges in all things except the judgement. We are to seek the truth of things, examine and weigh things with prudence and charity (especially ourselves as Paul has done), and generally understand what's really going on (keeping in mind our limitations of understanding of course), but we're not to pronounce judgment.

    So it seems the error of judgment is not the judgment--maybe it's right, maybe it's wrong--but assuming the role of judge in the first place.

    It blows my mind. It's so beautiful.

    1. There is much to that. Making moral judgments as to right and wrong is essential to taking the right way or going off track.

    2. Also, I love 8 1/2! Back when I was more pretentious than I am now I would tell people 8 1/2 was my favorite movie. Ha! That makes me laugh now. It's a great film though.

  3. People who judge should be condemned without mercy! :)

    1. You are alive - you survived AOTM! Yes - judgemental people should be exiled.

  4. Oh! Oh! I forgot to add - I could be wrong too. So anyway - this post was really an attempt to articulate a personal insight.

  5. Interesting that our intellect is called the "seat of judgment." I always thought not judging meant not presuming we know the state of another's soul. But how can one perform the spiritual work of mercy, "admonish the sinner," without judging his actions?


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