Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Examine yourself regularly

Athletes test themselves all the time. 

Those who run for the Olympic gold train ceaselessly and attentively examine their progress day by day. In the spiritual life, St. Paul compares us to athletes on several occasions. We run a race that has eternal consequences - and we really want to win.

So testing, examining, finding the best way. This is not a morbid navel-gazing under the stern gaze of an angry God who will punish the least flaw. No, it is the desire to live with him and for him to the very best of our ability - and even beyond.

Examine. It is good to have the right attitude. It is easy to fall into a "rule" mindset. You know, "how much can I get away with without breaking the rules?" "How much can I 'cheat?'" The idea here is that we are entirely free. As long as we're not choosing sin, we have freedom to choose the good. 

We want to be saints. It is not enough to be "good." Goodness is good, after all, but why not make our lives "something beautiful for God?"

Spiritual athletes need to test themselves all the time.

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