Why would a priest spend time with a nobody like me?
In the past year I have talked with a number of good Catholics interested in spiritual direction. Almost all of them expressed a feeling of being unworthy of a priest taking time out just for them. One woman said, “Why would a priest spend time with a nobody like me?” Now, mind you, this woman recently fought through some very difficult challenges and converted to Catholicism in spite of them. She is an exemplary woman who is actively seeking and submitting to God. However, she still feels unworthy.
Her struggle reflects things within her that are good, and some that are obstacles to her spiritual growth. The good is the honest recognition that before God and holy men and women, we rightly feel a bit unworthy. We are fallen creatures after all. On the other hand, the worst sinner among us still bears the image of God. Each person on this planet was specifically brought into existence by God (For you created my inmost being; you knit me together in my mother’s womb – Psalm 139:13). He desires a relationship with each and every person – this includes you.
If we struggle in a similar way, it would be well worth our time to meditate on the parable of prodigal son (St. Luke 15:11-32). We should see ourselves as the prodigal and God as the loving father. He longs for us and regardless of the level of depravity to which we have lowered ourselves, He eagerly awaits our return. The second He sees our hearts turning His way, He opens His arms to receive us. He not only offers us forgiveness, but heaven and earth begin to rejoice with Him.
Turn to Him and those whom He has consecrated to serve you to Him. He has provided priests and consecrated in order to help you come to Him. Don’t deny Him when He has given so much for you. He is eagerly waiting for a deeper relationship with you and any good priest will see that and delight in your desire to grow deeper in Christ.
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