Pleasing to God, and Perfect
Thursday, 7th week of Easter, May 17, 2018
"So that we might discern what is good, and pleasing to God, and perfect"
Just to aim at "doing good and avoiding evil" is a sub-Christian life. Those who only try to avoid "sin" by keeping the Ten Commandments have not accepted the New Law of Jesus, which is summarized, but not complete, in the Sermon on the Mount (Matthew, chapters 5 to 6). In our prayer we ask the Holy Spirit daily to help us see the difference between what is "good," and what is "pleasing to God."
We learn to discern what is "pleasing to God" by making it our habitual goal to bear witness to Christ by living in a way that cannot be explained except by the action—the inspirations and empowerment—of his Holy Spirit within us. We stop asking whether something is good or bad, right or wrong, but only whether it bears witness to the values of Christ. To ask this consistently gradually teaches us the discernment that transforms our whole way of living.
To discern what is "perfect," we try to live in constant, conscious surrender to Jesus acting with us, in us, and through us as his body. Though we fail a lot, we keep trying to live in partnership with him as his risen body, his divine-human presence in the world. A great help to this is to form the habit of saying the WIT prayer all day long, before and during everything we do: "Lord, do this with me, do this in me, do this through me."