Sunday, October 14, 2007

Imitation of Christ


Started reading Thomas A'Kempis' Imitation of Christ while taking a trip along the West Coast to San Francisco, Portland area, and Seattle. Visited the Shrine to St. Francis while in San Fran, which I guess isn't all that big deal compared to, say, going to Assisi, but was glad to see they seem to have a good, faithful ministry there. Also talked to a hippie in Buena Vista Park near Haight-Ashbury. That was probably the highlight of the whole trip. Afterwards, I kinda wondered what Jesus might have said during that conversation, which I guess is a cheesy WWJD-ish thought to have, so I didn't waste time thinking about it for too long because -- obviously -- Jesus wasn't there in human flesh and blood.

Anyway, back to the point of this post, which is gonna be quick since I'm thinking shorter posts are better suited to my writing and reading style. Maybe a few people will actually read this thing if the posts are short :)

I keep going back to this one line in Imitation from Book I Chapter XI: "If every year we would root out one vice, we should soon become perfect men." Obviously, he's not saying we'll cease to be sinners, but our imitation of Christ will approach perfection by God's grace. I find this convicting because this past New Year's, I made an honest-to-God resolution to cut Sloth and procrastination out of my life. How am I doing? Well, I keep putting it off. This year is nearly over and I don't want to make the same resolution again next year.

See, I often think up ambitious ideas for a small business I could start or some creative evangelistic effort, but I suck at taking the smaller practical steps to get from Point A to Point B. Usually those aren't so exciting to think about. Relating it to St. Francis' life, he didn't set out to create a religious order that would remain one of the world's largest 800 years later while producing some of the Church's most beloved saints. He simply longed to love Jesus in a leper and to adore Him in the Eucharist.