The Evolution of the State of Grace
By Fr. Robert J. Carr
©Catholic Online 2004
There are two terms that we need to look at in light of Jesus's teachings. One is evolution. Now, that word has a controversial side, because of what we call biological evolution. However, that is a term for another homily and another day. There are all forms of evolution. For example, if it was not for technological evolution you and I would now be in a wooden church and our main concern, outside of mass, would be ensuring that we had enough wood to last us throughout the winter.
The other term is State of Grace. That is considered a kind of a traditional term and it has fallen into disuse for quite some time. State of grace has always been that state in which we are not in mortal sin and are in a good relationship with God. It is most defined in the sense that if I am in a State of Grace when I die, I go right to Heaven. It is an important term, but it has to be looked at again in its more profound sense, especially in light of the previous term "evolution". We can look at both in light of todayís gospel.
HOW TO BE THE OBEDIENT SERVANT
In the twelfth chapter of Luke Jesus says "Blessed are those servants whom the master finds vigilant on his arrival." Here we see Jesus talking about the servant who is ready at any time for his masterís return. If we look at the words simply then we can see the obedient servant who is caught being obedient by the master returning. This makes the master happy. However, such obedience only goes so far.
The true servant in service to his master on his estate, is the one who has fully embraced the masterís vision and mission. That person is not just obedient, but can act with his masterís mind and heart in the manís absence. That is a deeper sense of obedience and that is the sense we are called to in this gospel. That is also the deeper sense of the State of Grace.
When we are in a state of grace we get closer to Christ and, therefore, we think in the mind and heart of Christ. Our actions and choices and our way of life reflect our being in that state. A person who is in a state of grace, mindful of his relationship with Christ, will think in four dimensions, the three material dimensions and the dimension of the spirit. This person will think and act differently than one who only thinks in three dimensions.
However, that has been forgotten of late and partially because of a bad sense of evolution. People believe that evolution teaches that God does not exist and/or we no longer need him. That means that they are thinking only in three dimensions. If we are in a state of grace then we are thinking at a higher level than they are. The problem is that somehow people have gotten into the mentality that just because leaders and experts claim to be smarter or more educated then we should listen and obey them. However, if they are thinking in three dimensions and we are thinking in four, they should be listening to us more than we should be listening to them.
WHY WORK WITH THREE CYLINDERS IF WE HAVE FOUR?
Think of it in the sense of a car with four cylinders. Those who think in three dimensions: secularists and those who reflect a more secularist sense of the faith, are like a car with four cylinders only operating on three, it works but does not work as well as it should. If we think in four dimensions in our relationship with Christ then we are like a four-cylinder car working on four cylinders.
Lately in the city there has been an outbreak of violence. Yet, that should not surprise us fully. There are many people who are now coming to seek a solution. However, if they are only thinking three dimensionally, they will not find a full solution. For example, look at the police. The police arrest people. Arrest means to stop. They can stop those people committing crime from doing it at that time. However, to stop it altogether takes a deeper response and that requires four-dimensional thinking because it is a four dimensional problem. After all we are also talking about actions rooted in sin and evil. Those are concepts beyond the three dimensional thinker.
PRACTICAL APPLICATIONS OF 3D AND 4D THINKING
Part of the problem is that the violence is the product of policy and laws made at the upper levels of our society by three dimensional thinkers. God tells us always to be mindful of the poor. Remember in a society the poor are the most vulnerable and the first to show the symptoms of a bad policy. If you have three-dimensional thinkers making bad policies and laws, they will not feel the effects of them for quite sometime because their status in society protects them. They will not be affected in a sense until the society decays to a point that finally people are at their doorstep committing armed robbery by putting a gun in their face.
However, their policies will begin to ...
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