Attachments

Scripture Reading

At that time,
John summoned two of his disciples and sent them to the Lord to ask,
“Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?” 
When the men came to the Lord, they said,
“John the Baptist has sent us to you to ask,
‘Are you the one who is to come, or should we look for another?’”
At that time Jesus cured many of their diseases, sufferings, and evil spirits;
he also granted sight to many who were blind. 
And Jesus said to them in reply,
“Go and tell John what you have seen and heard:
the blind regain their sight,
the lame walk,
lepers are cleansed,
the deaf hear, the dead are raised,
the poor have the good news proclaimed to them. 
And blessed is the one who takes no offense at me.”
(Luke 7:18-23)

Scripture Study

In answer to John’s question, Are you the one who is to come?—a probable reference to the return of the fiery prophet of reform, Elijah, “before the day of the Lord comes, the great and terrible day” (Mal 3:19)—Jesus responds that his role is rather to bring the blessings spoken of in Is 61:1 to the oppressed and neglected of society (Lk 7:22; cf. Lk 4:18).

Blessed is the one who takes no offense at me: this beatitude is pronounced on the person who recognizes Jesus’ true identity in spite of previous expectations of what “the one who is to come” would be like.[1]

Scripture Reflection

Today we celebrate the feast of St. John of the Cross, the great 16th-century teacher on spirituality and a Doctor of the Church. John famously said that the soul is like a pane of glass. When it is clean and clear, the light of God shines through it, but when it is smudged with attachments, it blocks the divine light.

What did he mean by attachments? Attachments are anything in this world, including your own life, that you are convinced you cannot live without. Money, fame, power, privilege, the esteem of others, material things, your own survival—any of these become attachments when we cling to them in order to protect or foster our egos. They become our masters and we become their prisoners.

So what do we do? How do we move from attachment to freedom? We have to realize that everything is a gift. Your being, your life, your body, your powers of mind and will and imagination, your accomplishments—all of it is a gift from a gracious God. When we realize this, we know that nothing is owed us; we have no great status to defend. Then we can live in gratitude.

– Bishop Robert Barron

May the virtues of faith, hope, and love go with you today – DV. 

 

 

[1] Donald Senior, John J. Collins, and Mary Ann Getty, eds., The Catholic Study Bible, 2nd Ed.: Notes, 2nd ed., vol. 2 (New York: Oxford University Press, 2011), 1450.