Practice Your Faith

12-02-2018Catholic ThoughtsDavid Lins

It has been a few weeks since I wrote this column, so first things first…I want to begin by thanking Sr. Mary Eileen for covering for me over the past two weeks. Next time, I need to find someone who isn’t quite so eloquent, intelligent, and spiritual! (Making me look bad, Sister!)

Over the Thanksgiving weekend, I went camping. I put up my six-person tent all by myself. (Side rant: I only own a six-person tent because my wife insisted on a big tent for when we go camping. Since purchasing said tent, it has been used by “us” once. It has been used by “me” three times. But I digress.) Next site over was a young couple struggling to put up a tent barely big enough for the two of them. I offered to help more than once, but the guy didn’t want to admit his lack of skill in this particular department. I was setting up the rest of my site for the night and decided it was time to get my fire going. They had finished the tent and were starting on a fire of their own. They were somehow failing despite using a fire starter puck. I built a classic log cabin fire using a few napkins to get the fire roaring in about three minutes flat. Again, I offered my help. Again, “the man” told mehe had it under control. Eventually, he did—with the help of half a bottle of lighter fluid.

I don’t know what his camping history is, but I have to assume it isn’t on par with my own. While I’m no Army Ranger, I am an Eagle Scout whose family used to camp often. I’ve completed a three-week trek into the Wind River Reservation near Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The list goes on. The only reason I was more skilled at the camping trade was practice. My guess is he watched some YouTube videos and stopped at Bass Pro Shop.

As Advent begins, we need to get ready for Jesus. But are we ready? Some of us compare ourselves to the saints and we feel like we could never measure up. We are barely keeping our lives together and we seem to be running out of effort. Yet we try to keep up appearances. We tell the world, “we have itunder control.” The saints practiced holiness—practiced being holy. They prayed. They read their Bibles. They read the writings of previous saints. They were charitable. They were generous. They went to Mass often and confessed regularly. Want to be ready for Jesus? Practice your Faith.

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