“If we live by the Spirit, let us also be guided by the Spirit.” (Galatians 5:25 NRSV).
Exactly how do we define our identity?
I have written before about labels, our false-sense of self and our true selves. The times we are living through, puts labels on top of labels, on top of labels. The labels by themselves only describe many things about us. When we cling to labels and put all of our identity into the labels, we hand over our dignity and our true selves to an idol. We deprive the very essence of what makes us who we really are to something that does not satisfy our interior thirst for God. We forget what the Redemption by Jesus Christ of ourselves, has given us.
Basil Pennington in his book Centering Prayer: Renewing An Ancient Christian Prayer Form wrote;
“He [The Holy Spirit] is our Spirit, the Gift given to you at Baptism to be your very own spirit; ask Holy Spirit through the words printed in these pages to “teach spiritual things spiritually.” (p. 10).
Contemplative prayer can be thought of as a journey of our spirit in search of union with God, The Holy Spirit to be a “new creation in Christ.” (See 2 Corinthians 5:17-18). The Holy Spirit gives new life to who we are, because of God’s love for us in Jesus Christ, the Word of God. We only need to spend some time in solitude and silence to live into the Holy Essence (Spirit) who is our essence and well-spring of our new life in Christ. There in is our strength in times of weakness, our hope when we are in despair, our victory when we have lost everything.
“And finally, never lose hope in God’s mercy.” (RB:1980: The Rule of St. Benedict in English. Chapter 4 The Tools for Good Works, p. 29).
What identity are you living by?
Brother Anselm Philip King-Lowe, OSB-CoS
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