Jesus said to his disciples: “I have much more to tell you, but you cannot bear it now. But when he comes, the Spirit of truth, he will guide you to all truth. He will not speak on his own, but he will speak what he hears, and will declare to you the things that are coming. He will glorify me, because he will take from what is mine and declare it to you. Everything that the Father has is mine; for this reason I told you that he will take from what is mine and declare it to you.” (John 16: 12-15)
Jesus told his disciples that he would send them the Spirit of truth who will guide you into all the truth …and declare to you the things that are to come (John 16:13). Jesus knew that his disciples could not fully understand on their own everything he had taught and revealed to them while he was physically present with them. He knew that they would need the ongoing guidance and help of the Holy Spirit after he returned to his Father in heaven. That is why he assured them that the Holy Spirit would take what he had spoken to them and guide them into a fuller understanding of God’s wisdom, power, and glory he wished to share with them so they could live in the joy and freedom of his love and truth.
What has that to do with us? Everything.
It begins with an ending. Yours and mine.
God gave us Creation to get to know him through seeking, even groping, in order to find him. God wants an intimate relationship with all of us, so that in him would “live and move and have our being” and grasp that we “are his offspring,” that he seeks to adopt us as his beloved children.
Life is not a debating society, religion is not just a thing to think about, but the most consequential thing we do, because there is a judgment coming on which our continued life will depend.
Faith is a never-ending journey during which we learn about ourselves and God.
We absorb the truth of the Gospel at God’s pace, not ours. He knows what is best for us at any given moment, and we can trust that we are as holy and perfect as he desires for us to be, providing we avoid sin, don’t cling to attachments, and are faithful to prayer and the sacraments. Are there obstacles within us that keep us from loving Christ?
Regardless of what we see or hear around us in this topsy-turvy world where we are told that black is white and white is black, the truth is not democratic; we don’t get to vote on it. And we don’t get to avoid inconvenient truths because we don’t like them. How do we conform our hearts and minds to the truth of the Gospel when it doesn’t seem to jive with what the world says or, perhaps, even with what our own heart wants to hear? This is where we need to cultivate the virtue of trust. God, who is all good, really knows what’s best for us. We are called to live in the Spirit, trusting in the Lord with all our heart (Proverbs 3:5). The proverb continues, “In all your ways acknowledge him and he will direct your path” (Proverbs 3:6). In whom do we trust?
The Holy Spirit has “everything the Father has,” and everything the Spirit has is ours as children of God. The “things that are coming” include the powerful gifts of the Holy Spirit, which are at work in our lives to this day. Furthermore, “things that are coming” include our own death and resurrection to eternal life (God willing), about which we still know very little except what St. Paul told us, “What eye has not seen, and ear has not heard, and what has not entered the human heart, what God has prepared for those who love him” (1 Corinthians 2:9). How blessed are we to receive truth and gifts of all kinds from the Father, through the Son, in the power of the Holy Spirit who is present in our lives!
So, stop every day. Take a deep breath. Open yourself to the Spirit. Let the Spirit speak to you. The breath of God is alive in you. Waiting to reveal the way and the path.
How blessed are we.
Prayer of The Day
“Lord Jesus, fill me with your Holy Spirit and guide me in your way of life, truth, and goodness. Free me from ignorance of your truth, and from deception and moral blindness caused by sinful pride and the refusal to believe and obey your word of truth. May I love you with all of my heart, mind, and strength, and seek to please you in all things.”
Today, through the guidance of the Holy Spirit, we, too, proclaim the same ancient faith which the apostles taught – that Jesus died, and was buried, and rose again on the third day, and will come again to judge, raise the dead, and give everlasting life (from the Apostles Creed). We not only share the same faith which was given to the apostles, we also have the same Holy Spirit who raised Jesus from the dead. The Lord Jesus gives each of us his Holy Spirit as our divine Teacher and Helper that we may grow in the knowledge, wisdom, and strength of God. Do you listen attentively to God’s word and allow his Holy Spirit to give you understanding of God’s truth and plan for your life?