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Christian Life: An Everyday Vocation
Transcript of Christian Life: An Everyday Vocation
- St. Bonaventure EXITUS - REDITUS The Christian Life: An Everyday Vocation what does it mean to be Christian? POVERTY Human beings are most profoundly
themselves when they discover their relation to their creator. humus humanitas humilitas He will crown the poor with salvation. - Ps 149:4 - Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger In putting aside all preoccupations, we encounter our creator. - Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger This above all:
to thine own self be true. - William Shakespeare At the time when the Lord
God made the earth and the
heavens... the Lord God
formed man out of the clay
of the ground and blew
into his nostrils the breath
of life and so man became
a living being. GENESIS 2 Enter Original Sin: "You will be like gods"
Gen 3:5 At the very heart of sin lies human beings'
denial of their creatureliness. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger Lord who do you want me to be? Man is not the architect of his own life. Conversion consists essentially in that decision by which man ceases to be his own creator. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger The fundamental Christian attitude is one of humility, a humility of being, not a merely moralistic one: being as receiving, accepting oneself as created and dependent on love. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger In the New Testament Christ is referred to as the second Adam, as the definitive Adam, and as the image of God.
This means that in him alone appears the complete answer to the question about what the human being is.
In him alone appears the deepest meaning of what is for the present a rough draft. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger He is the definitive human being, and creation is, as it were, a preliminary sketch that points to him.
Human beings are the creatures that can be one with Christ and thereby be one with God himself. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger Hence this relationship of creature to Christ, of the first to the second Adam, signifies that human persons are beings en route, beings characterized by transition.
They are not yet themselves; they must ultimately become themselves. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger "Behold, I am the
handmaid of the Lord. May it be done to me according to your word." Luke 1:38 Mary makes herself completely available as the soil [for the Word]. She allows herself to be used and consumed so as to be transformed... Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger His is a silence permeated by contemplation of the mystery of God, in an attitude of total availability to his divine wishes.
In other words, the silence of St. Joseph was not the sign of an inner void, but on the contrary, of the fullness of faith he carried in his heart, and which guided each and every one of his thoughts and actions. Pope Benedict XVI Jesus' whole being is mission. Benedict XVI Jesus, the Holy One of God, is the one sent by God. His whole identity is "being sent."
He lives totally from the Father. Pope Benedict XVI His life is totally one of mission ...
a life for us. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger Active readiness [is] the true essence of creatureliness. Hans urs Von Balthasar YOU HAVE DONE MUCH BUT NOTHING HAS COME OF IT. - HAGGAI 1:6 - The life and person of Jesus centered on his constant communication with the Father. Joseph Cardinal Ratzinger Only in this womb of absolute readiness does God deposit the seed both of his Word and of the mission he bestows.
Only this assent of boundless readiness is the clay out of which God can form something. Hans Urs von Balthasar The only act by which a human being can correspond to the God who reveals himself, is the act of unlimited readiness. Hans Urs von Balthasar AVAILABILITY Not my will, but thy will be done. (Luke 22:42) God created the universe in order to be able to become a human being and pour out his love upon us and to invite us to love him in return. Ratzinger INCARNATION ATTITUDE PRAYER OPPOSITE AVAILABILITY CREATION ATTITUDE PRAYER OPPOSITE POVERTY LORD, WHO DO YOU WANT ME TO BE? BEING-AS-CREATOR,
ARCHITECT OF ONE'S LIFE REDEMPTION ATTITUDE PRAYER OPPOSITE RELATIONALITY RESENTMENT
PRAYER SELF-ENCLOSURE SILENCE NOISE,
PRECONCEPTIONS The Gospels often present Jesus, especially at times of crucial decisions, withdrawing to lonely places, away from the crowds and even from the disciples in order to pray in silence and to live his filial relationship with God.
Silence can carve out an inner space in our very depths to enable God to dwell there, so that his word will remain within us and love for him take root in our minds and hearts and inspire our life.
Hence the first direction [of how Jesus’ prayer touches our prayer life]: relearning silence, openness to listening, which opens us to the other, to the word of God. Ratzinger We have seen that holiness, that is to say, belonging to the living God, signifies mission…Jesus, the Holy one of God, is the one sent by God.
His whole identity is “being sent”…He lives totally “from the Father.”
After the Resurrection, Jesus draws the disciples into this dynamic of mission... Christian existence is put with Christ
into the category of relationship... Ratzinger ‘Son’ means being from another;
thus, with this word he (Saint John) defines the being of this man
as being from another and for others,
as a being that is completely open on both sides,
as a being that knows no reserved area of the mere ‘I’. Being a Christian means being like the Son, becoming a son;
that is, not standing on one’s own and in oneself, but living completely open in the “from” and “toward”. The most individual element in us -- the only thing that belongs to us in the last analysis -- our own “I”, is at the same time the least individual element of all, for it is precisely our “I” that we have neither from ourselves nor for ourselves.
The “I” is simultaneously what I have completely and what least of all belongs to me. MAKING AMENDS
ENTERING INTO RELATIONSHIPS
UNIFYING OUR LIVES WITH GOD AND OTHERS
SEEING THE OTHER AS A PART
-- NOT APART -- OF MY LIFE RESENTMENT PRAYER 1. Lord, this is a sick person.
2. How do you want me to serve him/her?
3. Save me from my anger.
4. Thy will be done. MAKING AMENDS 1) I regret what I did.
2) I don't want it to drive a wedge between us.
3) What can I do to make it right? RELATIONALITY GOD IS LOVE, AND WHOEVER REMAINS IN LOVE REMAINS IN GOD AND GOD IN HIM.
(1 John 4:16) CREATION INCARNATION REDEMPTION