Repentance is a change of heart. It’s born of regret and ends with a new way of doing things. If we are lucky we discover our need to repent before we are driven to our knees in pain. There are many who have looked back and realized that if they had just…
This is Advent. Let’s not get lost in the lights, shopping, holiday parties, and jingle bells. Let’s prepare for the birth of our Lord in our hearts, not just on our front lawns and windows. Ask yourself:
- What things am I doing now that can lead me to ruin if I continue? Am I stretching the envelope too much? If so, what needs to change? Stress, you know, is the number one factor for having a nervous breakdown.
- How am I distracting myself from the problems or the symptoms I am having? Too much social media is highly correlated with depression and addictions of all kinds usually begin as attempts to run away from problems.
- Have I avoided getting professional help for physical, mental, marital, or other problems? The rationale is usually that I can handle it myself. Have you ever heard of pride before the fall?
Self-loathing is a terrible thing. It’s much better to take stock of one’s life before hand, repent of the things that will inevitably do harm, then work to change for the better.
We Catholics have the Sacrament of Reconciliation. In it, the priest becomes the face of Christ for us so we can face ourselves. There’s something about speaking to flesh and blood that can remove the tendency to rationalize and set us on the course for change. A priest absolves us in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit. Look up then and see the cross behind the priest. Then, welcome the Baby in the manger with your promise of a new way of doing things.
Picture was taken November 2016 at Christ the King church, Richland, WA. Thanks Fr. Dan.