God gave us the gift of free will and the authority to decide whether to use this will for good or for bad. Along with this freedom to choose, God gives us a helper, an advocate His Holy Spirit to guide us in our decision-making. So how can we open ourselves to God in our life to help us to make good decisions and Holy choices.
Sometimes satisfying our curiosity and seeking out an adventure can be as easy as opening a book. But most of the time, we need that first-hand experience in order feel a sense of thrill and accomplishment. For some of us, adventure can be simply trying something new or overcoming a fear. All of this is very good, and is part of how God created us to be. But like all things, it can go too far, and put us and others in harm’s way.
Sadness, although can sometimes be helped with professional help, it doesn’t always require it and is a normal reaction to the losses we experience. When we recognize sadness as a natural occurrence that comes to us all from time to time, we are better able to help ourselves and others through the challenge. Jesus experienced sadness throughout His life on earth. We can learn from His example, as well as look to Him for support during our sad times.
Pride, Greed, Lust, Anger, Gluttony, Envy and Sloth are known as the seven deadly or capital sins. While these sins may not physically kill us or stop us from breathing, they are serious and distance us from God. Recognizing these sins in our life is the first step to overcoming them. Prayer and building a relationship with God is also a way to strengthen our spirit to avoid these types of sins.
Keeping promises sounds easy. Most of the time we associate it with keeping secrets. While they are two distinctly different things, whether it means keeping a private matter to oneself, or honoring a pledge, they both require one to be trustworthy. Just as God fulfills His promises to us we are called to fulfill our promises. As Catholic/Christians we are expected to be loyal and true to our word.
Many young people feel the pain of a loneliness that is not easily cured by being in the company of others. It is not always easy to say where the feeling comes from or what causes it. Sometimes we can trace it to the loss of someone we care about. It can also start with a sense that we don’t “fit in” with the crowd and build over time.
How can we learn to rely on God’s grace and constant companionship to give us the strength in the dark times? How can the prayer of others lift us up when we are struggling? How can God heal our pain and give us new hope?