Encouragements & Wisdom: May 4, 2014
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Encouragements and Wisdom: May 4, 2014 (PDF).
E & W reflections are additional helps for your Sacred Story prayer journey. Reflect on them at week’s beginning or outside of your 15-minute prayer periods.
The process of Christ transforming my life into Sacred Story
continues when I invite Christ to illuminate my narcissism.
It is one thing to ask God for the grace to honestly name my sins and addictions. It takes even greater courage to ask that my concealed narcissistic pride be unmasked. Narcissism is incredibly deadly because it makes me both god and center of the universe (Gn 3:5). Ignatius struggled mightily with this narcissism because as we know, it infects even the religiously pious and those who aspire to holiness. For evil most effectively conceals itself in a mantle of righteousness.
Narcissism is always about a refusal to worship the one God and instead to worship oneself. Outside of a faith context, narcissism can manifest in the obsession over a temporal good (power, beauty, wealth, prestige, etc.). This form of narcissism can also tempt the religious person! But a person of faith is more likely to be tempted to self-salvation. Narcissism manifests by efforts to fulfill the law “perfectly” – therefore eliminating the need to rely on God as Savior and Redeemer.
Whatever form narcissism takes in my own life, it must be “revealed” to me by the God who knows my heart and who seeks to free me from the pride that the “original sin” wrought in human history. I must ask God to show me the very specific way I seek to be my own god and how I need to repent and open myself to the true God!
Lord Jesus Christ, I affirm that you and you alone are Lord of my life and of the world. You are the firstborn of Creation and the firstborn from the dead. Only you are God. Every knee will one day bend to you as Lord and Savior of all (Phil 2:10). Grant me the courage to ask for a gracious and compassionate illumination of my narcissism, so that I can find my way to you in
Creation, Presence, Memory, Mercy and Eternity.
(Psalm 116: 9-10)