Sometimes it seems that our society is only obsessed with looks, shapes, diets and exercise but when it comes to our faith…there doesn’t seem to be any urgency to exercise it or keep it in shape.  But our body and soul are connected in a very real and special way…and both need attention and effort to keep them fit.  Most of us do know how to keep our bodies fit…..but what about our soul?  What can we do to maintain our spiritual fitness?

 

The cross is the universal and most recognizable symbol of our Christian faith and our salvation. When we wear or display the cross we are “telling” others that we are followers of Jesus. The cross is also a symbol of the pain and hardship that Jesus endured when he suffered and died on the cross. How does the symbol of the cross help us to embrace its meaning and significance to our lives as Catholic Christians? How can embracing the cross bring us to a better understanding of and bring us closer in our relationship with Jesus?

 

Our country celebrates “Thanksgiving” to remind us that gratitude is something to be shared and shown in our words and actions. How can we make this feeling of gratitude and thanksgiving a habit throughout the whole year?  How can we be a greater witness of Christ by letting go of our feelings of entitlement, the feelings that we deserve to get everything we want?  In what ways can we grow to appreciate what we have and to recognize the more important things in life?  The things that money can’t buy!

 

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?

 

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.

 

 

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.

 

– Have you ever tried to change something about yourself? Maybe it was your hair color, your style of dress or a bad habit? What about your spirituality and your relationship with God? Have you ever tried to re-build or transform it so you could grow closer to God? This can be a challenge, but with God’s grace we can renew and transform ourselves to be more like Christ!