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At our beck and call
Posted By Eric Sammons On August 23, 2010 @ 7:58 am In Sacraments | Comments Disabled
This past weekend I attended the most important event in the life of any person: a baptism. A friend’s child was being baptized and it was wonderful to be there when this young soul was washed clean of Original Sin and transformed into a child of God.
During the actual pouring of water, I was struck with a wild thought: what if God decided not to pour His grace on this child when the water was poured over him? And of course I realized that this was impossible, because God promised us new life in baptism and He cannot break His promises. It made me realize that, in a way, God is at our beck and call: whenever a baptism is performed, no matter what the circumstances, God must cleanse the person of Original Sin and transform him into a child of God . How amazing is that?
The Catechism says that we are bound to the sacraments for our salvation, but God is not bound to them. This means that God in his mercy may save someone who has not received the sacraments. But if someone does receive the sacraments validly, then God is bound to pour grace on them because He promised He would. God the Almighty humbles Himself so much that He becomes a servant of our actions. And this is the case with every sacrament. If a priest validly says a Mass, the bread and wine must transform into the body and blood of Jesus Christ. When a priest says absolution after a worthy confession, God must forgive the penitent of his sins. If He were to not respond to the sacramental actions, He would be breaking His word, which is impossible for the One who is Truth.
This humbling of God reminds me of Philippians 2:5-11, which is set as a model for our own attitude as Christians:
Have among yourselves the same attitude that is also yours in Christ Jesus,
Who, though he was in the form of God, did not regard equality with God something to be grasped.
Rather, he emptied himself, taking the form of a slave, coming in human likeness; and found human in appearance,
he humbled himself, becoming obedient to death, even death on a cross.
Because of this, God greatly exalted him and bestowed on him the name that is above every name,
that at the name of Jesus every knee should bend, of those in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
and every tongue confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father.
If God is willing to humble Himself to be at our beck and call, should we not also be willing to humble ourselves for others? If we do humble ourselves, though, God one day will exalt us as well.
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