Thursday, August 27, 2020

The Christian Vocation is an Ongoing Conversion

Christian life is a path of conversion from an egocentric posture to an ever deepening habit of authentic charity - an attitude of mind and heart that truly loves other persons for who they are, and for how Jesus makes Himself present to us through their own personal uniqueness. Our Christian vocation takes concrete shape in the Lord's call to love, addressed to us in daily life, in our families, in work and social environments, and on the internet too. And Jesus shapes our lives in such a way as to draw us along the path of loving Him and loving others. Our sufferings, too, are encompassed within this particular plan of healing and transforming love that Jesus has for each one of us as a unique person, whom He embraces in His infinite wisdom.

In answering the call of the vocation to charity, we must have great trust in Jesus, for without Him we can do nothing. But He is with us, working in our lives and teaching us through His Spirit how to grow in genuine self-giving love. We must not become discouraged by our persistent imperfections and selfishness, but continue to work toward cooperating with God's grace and growing in love.

Saint John Paul II speaks of the Christian life as an ongoing conversion, a work-in-progress through which God's love is integrated into every aspect of our lives, bringing personal and social healing and transformation:
"What is needed is a continuous, permanent conversion which, while requiring an interior detachment from every evil and an adherence to good in its fullness, is brought about concretely in steps which lead us ever forward. Thus a dynamic process develops, one which advances gradually with the progressive integration of the gifts of God and the demands of His definitive and absolute love in the entire personal and social life of man. Therefore an educational growth process is necessary, in order that individual believers, families and peoples, even civilization itself, by beginning from what they have already received of the mystery of Christ, may patiently be led forward, arriving at a richer understanding and a fuller integration of this mystery in their lives" (Familiaris Consortio, 9).