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Man-Made Spirituality versus Communion With God

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After a few decades of dry spiritual exercises, Catholics either become just like the Pharisees who thought they were holy because they acted and looked holy on the outside or if they are honest with themselves, they become so frustrated they lose hope, believing communion with God is only for ancient saints or a few chosen ones. Most settle for a man-made spirituality when God offers all intimate communion with Him. The truth is a vibrant, joyful relationship with Christ is simply the normal Christian life when we learn how to surrender to God and let go of control. For years, I did not understand the subtle difference between authentic and man-made spirituality.  It is not an easy distinction to make; most of us remain in delusion until a spiritual director can shake some sense into us. For myself, I tried to force God to relate to me on my own terms. Since God refused to be manipulated, the harder I tried to grow closer to Him, the more I hit a wall. The experience often brought me…

The Onion Metaphor and Communion With the Divine

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For hundreds of years, spiritual directors in  the Eastern Orthodox, Roman Catholic  and Protestant churches, have used the metaphor of an onion to explain the spiritual life. I have referred it for decades because it is a perfect symbol, an image that really is worth a thousand words. It is easy to become discouraged when I seem faced with the same issues, wounds and weaknesses again and again. The mistake is to believe that nothing has changed since the last confession and subsequent experience of grace. That the encounter with the Divine was ineffective, that it was a failure. Nothing could be further from the truth.
The reality is that I am human and as an earthling, living in a body, made from dust, I must allow the Holy Spirit to transform me slowly.  continue reading> Share this: