If you are looking for my blog titled, The Contemplative Catholic Convert, you are at the right spot.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Locked Out

My soul, wait in silence for God only, for my hope is from Him. (Psalm 62:5)

At first, I thought it was the battery to my car alarm remote-control. The remote usually unlocks the door from several feet away. This time I had to use the key and manually disengage the alarm before I could start the van.

When it happened again a week later with a newly purchased battery, I thought the remote might be defective. It wasn't until after I installed a third battery that I learned why the remote-control didn't work. My friend pointed the reason out to me. 

"It's the interference from those towers," he said.

I followed his gaze across the hills to the radio transmitters a quarter-mile away and realized he was right. My car-alarm malfunctioned only in that parking lot. A hundred new batteries would not have opened the door. The only effective remedy against being locked out of my van was to stay away from the interference.

As I drove from the lot I wondered if there was a spiritual parallel between my locked car and the reason some people find themselves locked out of a closer relationship with Jesus Christ. 

Jesus promised His followers a life rich with the peace "which passes all understanding." He guaranteed us a well-spring of joy flooding from deep within ourselves. He assured us of power to overcome temptation. 

Yet many Christians can't even get into their vehicles, much less move on with Christ. They’re locked out by too much spiritual interference. Their source of entertainment and recreation stifles the Holy Spirit's guidance. The books and magazines they read interfere with the gentle voice in back of their minds urging them toward a different path. The movies they watch, the thoughts they nurture, the relationships they keep – all work together to interfere with God's whispered, "walk along this path." 

I didn't need another new battery to open the car door. I didn't need a new remote control. I simply needed to leave the area where radio waves interfered with my car alarm.

Late in his life, St. Augustine discovered God made us for Himself, and “our hearts are restless” until they find their rest in Him. And so when we find ourselves locked out of a closer relationship with Christ, may God help us understand we don't need more "things" to open the door and fill our spiritual void. We don't need more education, or more money – or even more religion.

We simply need to get away from whatever it is that interferes with His voice. 


Anonymous said...

A message for this woman's heart today...thank you.

Rich Maffeo said...

Anonymous, you're welcome. I am always grateful when something I said is helpful to others.

Barb Schoeneberger said...

In the spiritual life the Church speaks of detachment. It's very important for those in religious life, but perhaps more so for those of us living in the world. The extent to which we can detach from our own will, from the persons, places, and things that we crave which are not God, the greater capacity we have for charity. If only I did a better job of making time for Jesus!

Rich Maffeo said...

If only we ALL did a better job of making time for Jesus. That is why I love this journey, because we are always moving forward, and then back a little, and then forward and then back a little . . . but always drawing ever nearer to the King. Oh, how great is His patience.