“There are different kinds of spiritual gifts but the same Spirit;
there are different forms of service but the same Lord;
there are different workings but the same God
who produces all of them in everyone.
To each individual the manifestation of the Spirit
is given for some benefit.”
Author’s note: I made a mistake. Last week I wrote my reflection on this week’s readings. In order to get back on track, this article is based on last week’s readings. Next week, provided I don’t make the same mistake again, we should be back on schedule. Thanks for reading!
Sometimes we can think of our spiritual journey as an individual call to holiness: my relationship with God, my growth, my struggles with sin, my gifts, my meaning, or my purpose. There is a necessary and good sense in which our spiritual lives are personal. We should realize that God’s love is personal and we should take a certain ownership of our own actions and engagement with God, the Church, and all the world. The problem arises when we think of this aspect of our faith as the only or primary lens through which we look. We can end up setting ourselves up as the central beneficiary of the actions of God and everyone else. It becomes all about me. We can experience our faith as simply consumers or customers and judge everything based on how it benefits me. How I spend my time, use my talents, or give my money become a type of exchange for what I feel I have already received. Is it worth it? Was it earned? It is sort of like tipping a waiter.