Pondering Power

by Melanie on May 16, 2017

in Catholicism, Cursillo, Nonfiction, Spirituality, Your Daily Tripod

Note: On Tuesdays and some Sundays, you can find me at Your Daily Tripod, owned by my friend TonyD. A longer version of the post below appears there.

In The Wizard of Oz, Glinda the Good Witch brushes off a threat from the Wicked Witch of the West with a laugh and “Oh rubbish! You have no power here. Now be gone, before somebody drops a house on you too!”

In Doctor Zhivago, the chained anarchist headed for a “voluntary” labor camp sneers at his keeper and the others headed east in a crowded cattle car and declares: “I am the only free man on this train!”

And in John 14:30, Jesus’s reference at the Last Supper to the evil one is almost an aside—“He has no power over me”—before he focuses again on love and obedience to the Father.

It’s a laudable concept, this refusal to accept the authority that evil wants to have over us, to treat it as the distraction from God that it truly is, to persevere. But, as with so many things in earthly life, it’s easier said than done. Evil likes that, of course. Evil likes emotions such as regret and disappointment and anger and sorrow. Evil likes it when we play those sad old tapes in our heads, over and over again, or use our time to worry about the future and what it may bring.

So what to do? As Christians, we live in the moment, in the world but not of it. We keep our eyes and our hearts and our souls focused on the ultimate freedom that is God.

In his challenging, beautiful book Interior Freedom, Father Jacques Philippe puts it this way:

That others are sinners cannot prevent us from becoming saints. Nobody really deprives us of anything. At the end of our lives, when we come face to face with God, it would be childish to blame others for our lack of spiritual progress.

May we use our time to prepare for that meeting rather than conjure up the excuses we will use when it comes.


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