As they were going along the road someone said to Him, “I will follow You wherever You go.” And Jesus said to him, “The foxes have holes and the birds of the air have nests, but the Son of Man has nowhere to lay his head.”
Lk 9: 57-58
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When we proclaim our faith we are saying this: I am not of this world, I am not of the flesh but of the Spirit. There is a certain and implicit distance created between us and the world when we say: “I am a Christian.” There is a definitive distinction between the ways of the world per se and the ways of a Christian.
Indeed, the distinction and distance between the Christian way and the way of the world speaks to a serious differentiation.
Christian life is more demanding. To live in the Spirit is to live deeply, to challenge yourself to love, in loving to meet sacrifice and suffering, albeit redemptive suffering.
The distance between Christian existence and secular existence is substantial, particularly now – and that distance is growing and growing rather quickly. What is my point you ask?
A Christian will encounter daily tension between secular existence and life in the Spirit. That tension must be lived out. But how?
I suggest first of all to be conscious of what you do, what you are offered, what images you digest, what habits you form, what demands are made on you, what concepts and structures dictate your thinking, with whom you spend your time. Ask yourself, am I busy all the time? Absorbed in what the world would have me do? Or do I live with Christ? In quiet? In contemplation? In service to others? In prayer? In worship? In spiritual reading? Caring for my family?
In times when our faith is most challenged we must hold firm in our faith. Such a time demands our attention to who we are and what we do. Such a time would have us ask: what do I believe? Do I live what I believe? It is, today, such a time – a challenging time – but in these times we are given the opportunity to draw overtly and more completely to Christ and to discipleship.
An opportunity is a problem well considered.