Discernment, Legitimacy, & the Holy Spirit
Young people sometimes ask mom and dad, “What do you want me to do when I grow up?” If they are assured of their parents’ love and concern for their welfare, their input will mean a great deal. But mom and dad oftentimes will throw the question back, knowing their input isn’t always helpful. “What do you want to do? What does your heart tell you? What is God telling you?” And with a stroke of genius, “We just want you to be happy.”
What will make me happy? We are often faced with that question at the threshold of adulthood, faced with the potential for getting married, raising a family, choosing a career, discerning a vocation to ministry. But we need to bring our concerns to prayer and a process of sifting through pertinent information with those we love and who love us, so we are not motivated primarily by selfishness or an inflated sense of self-importance. We know that God wants us to be happy too. It isn’t too difficult if we agree on the details. But when God calls us to something not of our preference, just dismissing it will probably not give us peace of mind and heart. And in those moments, we need the input of others so we hear God’s voice collectively.
Jesus reminds his listeners that he came to do his Father’s will. So whoever hears his voice, hears the Father. Whoever sees him, sees the Father who sent him. We who are sent to continue his mission do so with the same assurance, which we cannot take lightly. If we speak in his name, it is because he sent us to speak, because the Father sent him to speak. If others see Jesus in us, it is because he sent us to be present as he is present, as the Father is present through him. So we need to know how to discern God’s voice better. We can claim all the earthly legitimacy we can pull together. But we only need one, that of the Holy Spirit, who speaks to us in prayer and discernment.
We celebrated this mass for the repose of +Danny Judlin III.
Rolo B Castillo © 2020