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Cautiously or Courageously?

Sometimes it just feels like a lose-lose situation. You find yourself in a conversation over social media, and no matter what position you hold, there is someone there to challenge you.

More often than not, we Catholics find ourselves on the countercultural side of a debate. The world wants fast and big and now and uninhibited pleasures. But our faith preaches a slow, sanctifying struggle that yields indescribable joy when we finally hand our wills over to Him.

Then there is the less often, but still prevalent situation, where you find yourself butting heads with another person in our Church. Perhaps it is a nuance, an interpretation, or something big.

Either way, we must remember, “Being a Christian is less about cautiously avoiding sin than about courageously and actively doing God’s will.” (Eric Metaxas on Dietrich Bonhoeffer, source.) In other words, do not worry so much about what either side is chattering about. Do not worry about being right and winning. Instead, use your life to courageously LIVE out God’s will. The Bible will tell us, there is a time for discussion and a time for action—for living faith out loud.

Today is the feast of Saint Justin Martyr. He is an example of just that. Saint Justin was beheaded, along with his students, for bearing witness to Jesus Christ. How courageous is that? He certainly paid no mind to what was being said around him.

In today’s First Reading, Saint Paul has a similar story: he found himself on trial and in between the Sadducees and the Pharisees. But the Lord comforted him and told Saint Paul to “take courage.”

So, where are we in our faith journey? Are we cautious, afraid of sin, and battling both sides in an attempt to be right? Or are we courageous, seeking goodness, and letting the trivial pass us by?

Jenna Hines has a teeny army of children: Ellen, Samuel, Theodore, and Maryn and is married to a bearded fellow named Mike. She is happiest when it is sunny outside and she has an embroidery needle in her hand. You can find out more about her here

1 Comment

  • Reply
    Ann
    June 1, 2017 at 9:27 am

    This is a very good reflection Jenna…much food for thought. I know that I err on the side of being too cautious a lot of the time. This overthinking and over analyzing pattern of mine…as I am determined to say the right thing to win the debate and not offend anyone, more often than not, leads to me doing, saying NOTHING. I need to remember what the real goal is. It is never about me, always about HIM.

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