grace

Difference between a duty and serving others

Lenten thoughts about the benefits of self-sacrifice

 

1. Why isn’t it enough if we carry out our duties well? Man is a social being. One of the primary benefits of a community is the division of labor. Sharing work results in duties. Why isn’t it enough though if we carry out all duties well? A task-oriented life is operated by an “external control”. A task-centered man never reaches the wonderful level of self-motivation that invents new solutions again and again Task-centered man is always anxious. He cannot decide whether he completed the task well enough or not. A task-centered life is a trap. It is a trap because it closes us into our own egos and it is a trap because it closes us into the often limited community defined by ourselves. (If you would like to read more about this, please, read my essay here.)

 

2. The power of serving others. In what way does serving others differ from a duty? Serving others is not controlled externally but it is arisen from Christ living in us and it returns there, too. The essence of serving others is to open our most important inner self, the love of Christ living in us, to others. Serving others is unselfish, gives vision and makes us unbelievably creative. Serving others is a huge power because it empowers our lives by the largest power of the Universe, the love of God, and passes this immense love to everyone and everything around us. (If you would like to read more about this, please, read my essay here.)

 

3. Self-sacrifice as the Door of Totality. What do we need to be able to serve others? Our own power is not enough for that. It is enough only for carrying out our duties. For the service we have to find Jesus living in us. It is not an easy task. We have to break the hardened shell of our own egos to see what is behind it. It is worth doing that. To break our egos is the most important event of our lives because behind it the Door opens which is not anything else but Jesus Himself who leads us to the love of God (John 10:9). (If you would like to read more about this, please, read my essay here.)

 

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Can the Devil be domesticated?

How can we overcome our faults?

 

   

 

1. Our attempts to domesticate the Devil. We like the little, comfortable compromises in our lives: I have had a little virtue then I will have now a little (oops, sorry, sometimes I go too far, and then: a big...) sin. That is not working. The Devil cannot be domesticated! Mercy can only be complete if I have opposed the sin, if I have realized its depth, if I have named the Devil, if I have refused it, and if I want to live a different life after all these. From this point of view there is no a tiny little sin and a bigger one. What is important is the approach to sin (Devil) and God. I stand either on one side or the other. It is impossible to dance around between the two. (For further details, please, read my essay here.)

 

   

 

2. The fight against sin. If we have realized that it is impossible to make a compromise with the Devil then for the everyday thinking only one thing remains: the fight against the Devil – till death. But our own fight against the Devil is a hopeless and useless one. A sin-centric life is a dead end. There is no self-mercy. It is not our own fight that defeats the sin in us. Our own efforts are too small for this, are zero, nothing. It is only Christ born within us who is able to overcome the sin in us. There is no other way. Thus the fear of God is not a servile fear of God’s punishment, which presumes our separation from God, but an admiration of God’s true greatness revealed for us and a determined protection of the love-communion connecting us with God. All this does not mean that I would think: we do not need any kind of fight against our sins and faults because "God will take care of them". No! Mercy is not for free. Just to get close to God makes us feel Christ’s and the Father’s immense pain when they see our sins, makes us hate these sins and helps avoid them. (For further details, please, read my essay here.)

 

   

 

3. How can we overcome our faults? Neither with "making good on them". Nor only with fighting against them. We can overcome our faults only with accepting Jesus and with protecting the love-communion we have with the Father by all means, relying on Their power. Thus the source of repelling sin is the attraction to Jesus and the Father. That is how we ourselves become able to be peace- and love-sources in our environments. (For further details, please, read my essay here.)

 

 

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The power of prayer

Thoughts about the forms of our connection with God

 

 

 

1. Lives in which prayer does not “fit in”. Here I describe the monologue of two people. One of them is extremely poor, the other is extremely rich. The end of the two monologues are the same: I have my own problems. Leave me alone with worlds I do not even know anything about. This world has already overwhelmed me. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

 

2. Prayers to ourselves. A prayer for a lot of people is a... a.) monologue; b.) relief; c.) complaint; d.) solution; e.) obligation, role; f.) salvation. „Even a badly told prayer is much better than a prayer not told.” (Saint Teresa of Ávila) (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

3. The thousand faces of the genuine prayer: The blissful paths leading us to God. A real prayer searches for the Giver, not the gift. The genuine prayer is Silence listening to the totality of God living within us. A real prayer is not about us. It asks for and awaits the love, truth and will of God to the center of our hearts. In a real prayer we make ourselves silent in order to let God fill us. A real prayer does not decrease but increases our freedom explosively. Only in full knowledge of our pitifulness and indignity we can accept the mercy that delivers us from our pitifulness and indignity. A real prayer has a thousand faces. A real prayer – is our lives themselves as a whole. A real prayer does not live in time. A real prayer opens the gate of Paradise again and places the re-creating hands of God into our lives. (If you would like to read more about this, please read my essay here.)

 

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