Thursday, September 3, 2015

Abandonment as virtue

Today's gospel ends with the words,

Leaving everything they followed him.

It seems so simple in our imaginations and it looks simple in all of the movies. But remember these men were no different from you and I they had families, friends, and stuff. They were no less attached to their families, friends, and stuff. And yet as they gospel says, they abandoned everything.

It seems to me this gospel places before us two questions. Firstly, what or who is there in my life that I could not walk away from? Secondly, are there things or even people in my life that I need to walk away from?

We know that we are to love God above all things and yet each of us can develop either habits or relationships that are not good for us. Abandoning a relationship may seem heartless and yet did not the apostles abandon everything? This is not simply running away from responsibility in the name of religion. Many people have used religion as an excuse. This is the fruit of prayerful reflection and spiritual direction that can challenge us to look at everything and everyone in our life and be truly willing to abandon any or all of it for the sake of the kingdom.

What do I still need to abandon in order to be a true follower of Jesus?