Tuesday, April 26, 2005

Contact with God

Too many people judge their "contact with God" by their "feelings." If they feel devout, they believe they are close to Him and are pleasing Him, and if they feel dejected and gloomy, they think they have lost contact and that He has abandoned them.

But this is no yardstick. Actually we may be proving our best love for God when we least feel like pleasing Him. As long as we do what He desires us to do, no matter how we feel, we are manifesting true love of God. For did He not say, "If you love Me, keep My Commandments"? He said nothing about feeling good!

This is the unfailing test of true devotion, and contact with God, are we trying to follow His Will no matter how we feel.

There are times, it is true, when feelings help us to serve God and to do His Will with more enthusiasm, but let us always remember it is our will that truly shows how close contact we have with God, how much we love Him and how well we are serving Him. Like sin, virtue is always in the will.

So when our "contact" with God seems to have been served, our feelings are playing tricks on us. And if we keep on trying each day to do what we can to better carry out His Will and to improve ourselves, we can be sure that we are then, even more than when we "felt so good and so close to God," really improving our conscious contact with Him. "Conscious" refers to the intelligence and will, not to the feelings.

And let us never forget that in all things God loves us and intends our true happiness. This question we can never doubt; God loves us always-infinitely. So we need only to ask: How are we doing? Never, how are we feeling?

Adapted from Contact with God, by Fr. James Moriarty

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