Wednesday, September 4, 2013

For in [Christ] dwelleth all the fulness of the Godhead bodily. And ye are complete in him, which is the head of all principality and power:
To be filled, something must first be empty, as anyone knows who has started to fill a water glass at table, gotten distracted by conversation, and gone on "filling" the glass when there was no empty space left for the water.  Saint Paul wrote elsewhere about the self-emptying of Christ.  What he calls to our attention here is the need for our own. We cannot share in the fullness of the deity that fills us as the Body of Christ unless we make room by emptying ourselves of anything that offers no space for God.  The words of Saint Paul call to mind the holy of holies, the room at the heart of the Jerusalem temple kept all but empty to receive God.  We sometimes build other rooms in our inmost self and furnish them for other gods.  The prophet Ezekiel described an "idol room" in the much desecrated Jerusalem temple of his day.  Do we have an idol room, where we keep all the false gods whom we honour with our obedience and our sacrifices?  Their name is legion: public opinion, unnecessary financial gain, self-satisfaction, pleasure, comforts of all sorts.  They are all demanding of our time, our attention, our energy.  We recognize them best when they decree that we have no time to pray, no time for Divine Liturgy, no time to do a kindness, no time to listen to the stories of our children or the aging laments of our parents, because we must be at the beck and call of a TV program, an exercise class, a golf game, overtime work to pay for things we do not need... we all know them.  There is room for only one God in the inner temple of the Christian self - the one "who is the head of every principality and power."  With his help, let us drive out that other crowd, with all its demands, so that our inner emptiness may be filled not with their clutter but with the fullness of God in which we share through Christ.
                                                      - Sister Genevieve Glen, O.S.B.


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