Sunday, June 12, 2011

Holy Judgment

“…so that we may no longer be infants, tossed by waves and swept along by every wind of teaching arising from human trickery, from their cunning in the interests of deceitful scheming.” Ephesians 4: 14

The fourth gift of the Spirit we receive in Baptism and Confirmation is the gift of Counsel. Some people also refer to this gift as “Right Judgment”. I like to call it “Holy Judgment” because this gift helps us to know the difference between what is right and what is wrong.

This is such an important gift from the Lord and so needed in our world today. In every age there has been sin and temptation, but it seems that more than ever we are faced with a growing sense of moral relativism to go along with the daily sins and temptations we face today. What was once sin is now neutral at best and celebrated at worst. Just this week I read a quote in the paper from a teen speaker at one of my local graduation ceremonies and she said, “There are no wrong decisions. Whatever choices you make in life are the right ones because you made them.” What? So if someone from her class was to choose to kill someone that was OK because it was their choice?

We have all kinds of things that our culture has confused us about: abortion, contraception, sex outside of marriage, modesty, homosexuality, cheating…you name it, the culture is trying to tell us that it isn’t wrong, or it is at least morally neutral. There are even some college professors who claim the holocaust was not “wrong” because we can’t really judge what Germany was like right before and during World War II. And still others offer undergraduate classes on human sexuality that include viewing pornography or going to strip clubs as part of the curriculum. And at the same time our culture also labels and attacks the Church as out-dated, hypocritical or even sinister for standing up for moral truth.  

Yet there She stands still proclaiming the Truth no matter how inconvenient. And through the gift of counsel, we begin to be more open to listening to the Voice of Truth through the Church as the Spirit enables Her to proclaim in our world. We begin to grow in humility and we begin to hear the reason and the sense of the Church despite the clouds of confusion sown by the Evil One. We begin to see the foolishness and emptiness of a life lived without morals. And not only do we begin to wish to avoid that for ourselves, but we begin to desire that others might know what we know. Through the power of this “Holy Judgment” we can make moral choices based on faith and reason, rather than the winds and waves of human trickery, folly and emotions.

Dear Jesus, help me to know the Truth in all areas of my life. Help me to root out sin by becoming more aware of it in the world and in my own soul. Through Your grace may I always know right from wrong. Amen.

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