Tuesday, March 11, 2014

Mirror, Mirror, Of My Self

This would be a good album cover, whoa...
For me, the computer is like an external mirror of my self. The way I often use its many nifty tools (including the Internet) is basically a reflection of the distraction and vanity of so much of my life. But it also presents to me some very vital possibilities for pursuing the path of my vocation, a path where Jesus accompanies me.

With respect to distraction, this powerful gadget doesn't help make things better. It contributes to the fragmented and incoherent character of so many moments in my daily lack-of-engagement with reality, my daily forgetfulness of the presence of Christ in front of me and his Spirit within my heart.

Still, Jesus has grabbed hold of me, burst into my history, and taken control. The Holy Spirit is at work renewing me, and yet there are vast spaces within me that have scarcely heard the echo of the news that he is here; dark and deep places that I don't even know about, but that weigh me down with the fear that still emerges from them.

And yet, the computer and the internet are tools of communication. They can be dynamic places for the creativity of a writer (and the procrastination of a writer, haha). They are a service to my work, and I must make the effort to use them well.

I can recognize my weaknesses and ask the Lord to change me and draw forth from me an attachment to the good, and the willingness to work arduously for it. But the process of all of this, the measure of "how well I'm doing" -- especially for someone like me, for whom illness has rendered the mind such a confusing place -- is something that I cannot easily assess. The Holy Spirit works in his way, in his time.

So I offer everything. I pray for the grace to do the work he wants me to do. And every day I fall short, and I pray for forgiveness and for a greater change of heart. I'm glad God is God, because he can use even my weakness. But this doesn't excuse me from that tension which is involved in the vocation to grow in virtue and charity.

How much we all need to ask Jesus for His grace and mercy.

And right here, with the computer and the Internet, we have tools through which we can remind one another and encourage one another.