I have recently celebrated a lot of Confirmation ceremonies with groups of young people.
I have been struck by the openness of these young people. It has been a privilege to be able to pray over them for the Gifts of the Holy spirit.
When they come up to be anointed, I see a genuine openness in them.
One young man when asked the day after what it was like after the ceremony, he said:
“The Holy Spirit entered me. I felt a thousand good emotions that I haven’t felt before”.
When I heard this, I was deeply moved.
The words of Jesus came to me “unless you become like little children you will not enter the Kingdom of Heaven”.
Unlike a child, we so often carry so many blocks, so much baggage!
We are like someone about to go for a swim. They put lead in their pocket, wear trench coats with lead in the pockets, put a ball and chain around their legs, they then jump in the sea. Of course, they will sink!
We carry fears, self-doubt, jealousy, prejudice, low self-image, etc.
Jesus also said that unless we are born again, we cannot enter the Kingdom of Heaven.
With the Grace of God, we need to be able to make fresh starts. We need to be able to give God a chance to help us.
The openness of that young man was a reminder to me to let God surprise me.
If we are too inward-looking letting worries, fears, anxiety dominate our life, it becomes hard to be able to be open to mystery.
Of course, we are all flawed in some way, we all carry baggage. We are not machines and cannot just switch on and off our feelings and experiences.
However, Jesus so many times healed people and encouraged them to sin no more.
So many ‘trapped’ people have experienced the liberation of Christ. So many become Saints.
Lord, help me to be free, You told me to ask so that I can receive.