“If you realize that all things change, there is nothing you will try to hold on to.” Lao Tzu
It is a sad reality of our human nature that we would rather hold on to things that are hurtful or frightening — only because they are, at least, predictable — than let them go and grasp something new and different. The idea of change, even if it will be change from something bad and hurtful to something good and fulfilling, is just too much for many people to consider.
You might not agree with this; however, I challenge you to look back in your life and see if you haven’t engaged in that behavior a time or two yourself. If you are honest, you will most likely admit that there were times when you clung to the sad, bad, or hurtful only because it came with predictability rather than moved ahead into an unknown that promised an outcome that would be happy, good, or joyful.
We are, when it comes down to it, creatures of habit. Some of our habits are so ingrained that we find them nearly impossible to change. However, those habits might be keeping us from getting closer to God. In order to draw closer to Him, we might need to let go of things and trust that God will give us something much better in return.
Consider letting go:
Let go of an old way of praying in favor of something new. Maybe you are one who uses prayer cards and litanies. Try to do spiritual reading or silent contemplation.
Let go of a sloppy Mass routine. Maybe you’ve been happy “walking the celebrant” up the aisle or coming in during the homily. Choose to come to Mass early or stay afterwards and pray.
Let go of avoiding to help. You might have been one to let fellow parishioners do all the volunteering. Consider volunteering to be a minister at Mass — Eucharistic Minister, Lector, Server, Choir, Cantor, Usher, Greeter — or volunteering on one of the many Commissions in the parish.
Let go of some of those old ways that have made you “comfortable” but may not be nourishing you as much spiritually anymore and grab on to something new.
Whatever you do, do not be afraid to let go. If you ask God for His help, He will be with you as you reach out for the new and will guard you lest you stumble and fall.
FAITH ACTION: Examine your life and identify if there is anything you are holding on to for fear of change. Ask God to give you the grace to let go so that you may move ahead.