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Sunday, July 9, 2017

Laziness: Refusal to Encounter God

The lazy one says, “There is a lion along the way, and a lioness in the roads.” Just as a door turns upon its hinges, so also does the lazy one turn upon his bed. The lazy one conceals his hand under his arms, and it is a labor for him to move it to his mouth. The lazy one seems wiser to himself than seven men speaking judgments.
Proverbs 26:13-16

Sloth is probably one of the sins we commit by not doing anything. It is a sin of omission. While it is, in fact, commendable for one to take some rest and lie in bed once in a while, sloth goes beyond resting. It is laziness for no reason at all.
There are several scripture passages about sloth but the one I choose says a lot about it. According to the proverb quoted above, sloth always has a reason for not doing anything. The proverb even exaggerates that the slothful person will not even put his hands to his mouth. This is not about a person’s inability to move as in a sickness, but about a person’s DESIRE to NOT move.

This lack of desire to move can be physical and it can be spiritual and we see this in situations common today, especially with those who believe in values contrary to the gospel. The first type of people are those who sincerely believe these values BUT are also sincerely searching for the truth. For these people, what Pope Francis says holds, “Who am I to judge.”

The second type are those who do not agree with the values of the gospel and just do not care about searching for the truth. These are no different from the person mentioned in the proverb above: the lazy one seems wiser to himself than seven men speaking judgments. This is spiritual sloth. The Catechism (paragraph #2094) defines this as a refusal of the joy that comes from God and to be repelled by divine goodness.

When we fall into the second type who just do not care about searching for the truth, we refuse to discover the joy God gives. We immediately reject the truth because in us, we reject divine goodness. We reject the truth because it is painful and difficult. Yet, Jesus tells us that the truth sets us free.

As disciples of Christ, we must commit to search for the truth. No matter how long we have been learning about our faith, we need to continue learning about God through Jesus. The moment we stop learning about Christ, is the moment we fall into spiritual laziness.

Our life is a continuing journey of knowing our God. We will never exhaust our encounter with God and as long as we live, we continue our encounter with God. If we do not grow in our love for God, we are sliding back. It is difficult to maintain a loving relationship with anyone and God is no different. But if we have that desire, he gives us the grace. God continues to reveal himself to us, each and every day.

Lord, open my heart, make my one desire be to know you and let me act on that desire.

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