Friday, June 29, 2007

A thought for the single folks

Pray while you can! The time will come when you want to, but can't.

This thought came to me as I helped my wife through liturgy for the feast of Sts. Peter and Paul, attempting to get our two eldest daughters to behave. A genuine state of prayer was difficult to come by.

Pray while you can, and pray for those of us who can't pray as we would like.

Sunday, June 24, 2007

I hate God!

Don't get overly concerned--this is nothing new, but is a statement that I think is true of almost everyone. I was browsing the interent one evening and came across an Orthodox monk's advice to a young man, that he pray, "God, I hate you! I want to love you, but I don't. Please help me to love you." I was struck by the prayer, and have been thinking about it ever since. I have concluded that it is a true prayer.

"If anyone says, 'I love God,' and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot love God whom he has not seen." --1 John 4:20

I fail in love of brother all the time. If I am truthful, I must say that I do not love God.

“If you love me, you will keep my commandments." --John 14:15

I don't keep the commandments. Therefore, I don't love God. Modus tollens. It seems clear that I cannot say that I love God, and in fact, to judge from my activity, I am a great hater of God and all his works.

"Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love." -- 1 John 4:8

Not only don't I love God, but I don't even know him. What a wretched creature I am! And yet, there is hope in this. God is love, and we are called to partake of the divine nature (2 Peter 1:4), which means that we are called to love. Love is the way to taste God.

I don't love God. In fact, I have a deep antipathy to God, evident every time I choose self over him. These times are legion. Nevertheless, I can do as the young man was advised by the monk: I can pray that God makes me love him. Everything is grace, even the ability to love God.

I hate you, God, but I want to love you. Help!