If Not Age, What?

16 Mar

“The older I grow, the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom.”
~ H.L. Mencken

Well, if age does not bring wisdom — and, at 61 years of age, I am ready to admit just that — what does? I’ll tell you what does. The Holy Spirit!

Our eighth graders are preparing for the Sacrament of Confirmation a week from tomorrow. We teach them about the gifts of the Holy Spirit and one of those gifts is Wisdom. The Catholic Encyclopedia tells us that Wisdom, the greatest gift “detaches us from the world, makes us relish and love only the things of heaven.” Wisdom helps us to judge the things of the world in light of the highest end of man.  That would be the contemplation of God.

If that is the case, if Wisdom is such a perfect gift, why do we attempt to find it in our world? Why, for that matter, do we attempt to find anything spiritual in our world? When did we forget that God has always been willing to pour His graces into our lives? All we need to do is ask for them.

Ah. There’s the rub. We need to ask. And, if we need to ask, that means that we need to acknowledge that we cannot do it on our own. That goes against our human nature, doesn’t it? We do not want to admit that we are weak. We do not want to admit that we are lacking. We do not want to admit that we need help from anyone, even God.

Failing to admit that will just get us farther away from God. We need to admit that we need His help and to willingly ask for it. One of the things that we know for sure is that God will never force Himself on us. That is the whole concept of free will. God does not force. He waits for us to call. If we do, He will respond.

Are you like me — older but not as “wiser” as I thought I would be? Let’s make a pact: ask God for the graces and Gifts of the Spirit that are just waiting for us.

FAITH ACTION:  Pray to God today asking for the gift of the Wisdom that can only come from Him.

Do not forget that the Fridays of Lent are Days of Abstinence.