Let’s have proper focus in life
Memorial of Saint Josaphat, Bishop and Martyr – November 12, 2021
by Fr. Roy Cimagala
Considering that our life here on earth offers us a lot of things and options, plus the fact that we of course enjoy freedom, we need to be reminded that we have to learn how to have proper focus in life, especially because we have a lot of distractions in our world.
Also we should be ready to leave everything behind when God finally calls us. And, yes, we also have to know how to exercise our freedom properly for a certain law governs it. It just cannot be used in any which way. That would not be freedom, but rather its abuse.
All these are somehow implied in that gospel episode where Christ lamented about the loose lifestyle of some people then. “As it was in the days of Noah, so it will be in the days of the Son of Man,” he said. “They were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage up to the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all.” (Lk 17,26-27)
To have the proper focus in life is a big challenge today. At the moment, we can see a disturbing development involving many people, especially the young. A big segment of the people is getting addicted to games and the many other novelties played out in the Internet and in the new technologies.
They are now getting more self-centered and self-absorbed, prone to idleness, laziness and comfort and pleasure seeking. God and their relationship to others are all but blotted out of their consciousness.
We now have the huge challenge of how to make God the be-all-and-end-all of our life. We need to present Christ’s words in this regard in a way that would be attractive to the people of today with their peculiar sensitivity and culture. Let’s remember that Christ himself did everything to adapt himself to us to carry out his redemptive mission.
How can we present, for example, the following words of Christ to the people of today without scaring them: “Seek first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness, and all these things shall be added unto you?” (Mt 6,33)
We need to understand that our life here on earth is only a training and testing ground God gives us to see if what he wants us to be is also what we would like ourselves to be. We should be ready to leave everything behind when God finally calls us to himself to render account of what he has given us.
Yes, to leave everything behind has been more than amply taught and commanded by Christ himself. For example, to the rich young man who wanted to be perfect, Christ told him in no unclear terms, “If you want to be perfect, go, sell what you have and give to the poor, and you will have treasure in heaven; and come, follow Me.” (Mt 19,21) These words obviously would give us the impression that we should possess nothing.
In another instance, Christ specifies what is required to be worthy of him. “He that loveth father or mother more than me is not worthy of me; and he that loveth son or daughter more than me is not worthy of me.” (Mt 10,37)
We also need to understand that the proper exercise of our freedom is when we use our freedom to do the will of God for us. That’s the law, and no other, that governs our freedom.