Discipline is about Radical Trust

08-21-2022Weekly Reflection© LPi

The serious disciple knows the necessity and value of discipline. Thinking of discipline as something punitive in nature, we underscore its place in our spiritual lives. Discipline is really about a radical trust in God and his guidance. “When you are conducted by a guide who takes you through an unknown country at night across fields where there are no tracks, by his own skill, asking no advice from anyone, giving no inkling of his plans, what choice do you have but to give yourself completely to his guidance? If you are convinced that he is a good guide, you must have faith in him and abandon yourself to his care (Jean-Pierre de Caussade).”

If someone wants to be physically fit, they readily find a competent trainer who sets them on a rigorous schedule. Determined to reach their goals, they sacrifice personal pleasure and trust in his guidance. Why should it be any different with God? In order to remain true to the way Jesus places before us, we have to listen, learn, and be willing to change. Falling in love with God and maintaining that relationship requires an investment of time, energy, and hard work. Putting personal preferences aside in pursuit of the Gospel and giving proper attention to our spiritual lives is challenging work. At first, “all discipline seems a cause not for joy but for pain, yet later it brings the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who are trained by it (Hebrews).”

“What God does is essentially good. It does not need to be reformed or controlled…If you would live according to the Gospels, give yourself completely and simply to the action of God (Jean-Pierre de Caussade).” Submission to the holy will of God is not a submission to a set of pre-ordained set of circumstances. Rather, it is an abandonment and trust in God’s creative, life-giving, and salvific power. God brings light out of darkness and life out of death. Nurturing this bond of trust and seeking God in all things creates an intimate and particular relationship and bond between our Creator and us. When He comes, there will be no issue with us recognizing Him or Him recognizing us. We will have met before.