In our day to day life we have all experienced our fight or flight instinct, but there is a third option that is often the most deadly and this is the reaction to hide. Many times in natural disasters children do this, making it not only hard to find them but often times it brings about a tragic end. In the spiritual life this third option is often the most subtle and the most deadly. When we are confronted with the monsters of our sins, our fears, our past, our future or whatever it might be, we often choose to hide. When we see our sins we hide behind our justification. When we are confronted with a fear we hide behind what is comfortable and seemingly safe. When we see the mistakes or the wounds of the past we hide behind our successes of today telling ourselves that we will make up for what we have done wrong. Finally, when we encounter the future and it looks too large to handle we hide behind all sorts of distractions and often times useless complaining.
So what is the solution to all of these ways hiding? Simple, come out of hiding. We have to be willing to walk in the light of truth, we have to choose over and over again to come to Jesus. When we are confronted with our sins, we must allow the Lord to fight for us and to conquer what we ourselves cannot. To admit our sinfulness can often be painful but the result is to allow our Lord to be our savior, and there is no greater joy we can give Him. When we are confronted with fears we have to trust that it is the Lord Who is fighting for us. This might be hard to do, but if we practice praising Him for all the ways He is faithful we will see that it gets easier and easier. When we our confronted with our painful past filled with all the wounds and failures, we must be willing to walk through them with Christ. We cannot hide from the reality or Christ cannot bring healing to our hearts. If a sick person does not go to the doctor the doctor cannot help them, so too if we do not bring our wounded hearts to the Lord, He cannot give us new hearts with steadfast spirits. Finally when we are looking towards the future and we are filled with fear, we must stop looking ahead and look beside us to see the one Who holds our life in His nail pierced hands. The more we try to live with Him in each moment the less we will hide behind sensual pleasures and the less we will hide from all that causes us fear. The more we live with Him the more free we become and the less we will be controlled by fears.
As this lent nears its climax, let us run to Christ and join Him in the fight for the salvation of souls. Let us come out of hiding to be the city on the hill and shine His light on all we meet. He has called each of us to holiness, to greatness, to a life of freedom in Him. There is no need to fear because He has already conquered, will you let your heart be conquered too?
The Lord give you peace!
- Sister M. Xavier, FSGM