A spirituality adapted to the changing times

By Fr. Roy Cimagala

WE, of course, are told that nothing is new under the sun. (cfr. Ecc 1,9) But neither can we deny that times are changing, the world is evolving, developments continue to take place, and at these times, they come quite rapidly. And so, we also have to make certain adaptations in the way we keep and nourish our spiritual life. Otherwise, we would simply get lost or, at least, confused.

Obviously, the basics have to be retained. We need to pray always, have recourse to the sacraments, grow in the virtues, wage constant ascetical struggle, etc. But we have to find new ways of how to go about them.

These should be ways that effectively address the new features of our times when we have easy access to the new and powerful technologies, when we are asked to expand our scope of concerns, when we have to grow more in our sense of solidarity and subsidiarity, etc.

Yes, we have to learn to be more flexible and versatile, more open to the new things without compromising the traditional basic things, more adept in keeping the proper focus as we cruise through rapidly varying circumstances and situations.

Of great importance in this regard is the need for upgrading our vigilance skills, since we will always have to contend with very smart and wily enemies of our soul and of God himself. We are reminded of this need in that parable of the 10 virgins. (cfr. Mt 25,1-13)

We should not take this need for granted. We have to continually update and upgrade our vigilance skills. Remember Christ telling his disciples: “Beware that your hearts do not become drowsy from carousing and drunkenness and the anxieties of daily life…Be vigilant at all times.” (Lk 21,34.36)

Truth is the many developments today, while giving us a lot of advantages and conveniences, can also easily lead us to bad things. They can foster complacency, self-indulgence, vanity, pride, greed, envy, discord, etc. They can turn us into materialistic monsters, totally insensitive to the spiritual and supernatural realities of our life and to God himself.

We should never underestimate the tricks and snares of the devil, the false allurements of the world, and the dynamic of our weakened and wounded flesh. These enemies of our soul will constantly make new guises to mislead and tempt us. To upgrade our vigilance skills is not a matter of paranoia. It is to be realistic. It is to be effectively prudent.

We should not be naïve to think that with our current skills at spiritual and moral vigilance, we are already okay. We have to sharpen our sense of purpose in life, seeing to it that its general goal is being consistently lived and reinforced in the many subsidiary purposes we have during the year, month, week, day, and even hour.

With how things are now, we cannot simply rely on a generic sense of purpose. We have to learn how to be vigilant in all circumstances and situations in life, especially when we are tired, troubled, or when thrilled and excited.

Thus, it would be helpful that from time to time, we pause and examine how we are doing in our spiritual life. Do we still have the proper spiritual and supernatural bearing? Are there things to be corrected or modified? Are we aware of the state of our spiritual and moral resources?

We have to find the answers to these questions always!

Email: roycimagala@gmail.com