As we continue our discussion from last week, we need to face the fact that the majority of people we encounter every day are trying to get by or get ahead and they really don’t care about you as long as you don’t impact either of those goals. If you are going to be awesomely holy, your primary purpose must be to make the others around you look (and really be) good.
My career as an actor became a lot easier when I started worrying more about making the others around me better actors than being sure that I got the laugh line or all the attention. I worked more. I was a better actor. It was awesome.
Now think about it in terms of holiness. When you go to your job, even if you are working in the Church (especially if you are doing Church work) the majority of people are looking to impress the person above them, whoever that is. Your job is to impress God. That means other people might steal your ideas. Other people might take advantage of the fact that you are pursuing holiness. Do whatever you can to make the people around you better. Speak the truth. Stop gossiping. Be awesomely holy to be around.
You only have a certain amount of time on this Earth to be awesomely holy. It would be a shame if you wasted it on silly things.
Stop forwarding emails. Everyone hates it even if they say they love it.
Stop watching one television show every month and see if you truly miss it.
Check your digital social life only when you absolutely have to. For some of you that is once a week. For some of you who make a career online that is once every fifteen minutes. When you are at work, work; when there is nothing to do, don’t hang out just to impress people.
Pray every chance you can get.
Do something loving for every person you come into contact with.
You have only a limited amount of time to be awesomely holy.
People are More Important than Things
I don’t know how else to say this other than to state the fact that the Communion of Saints is made up of people, so learn to like them now. That means you have to give more than you take. That means you have to make people your priority and you have to love them where they are. Stop trying to change everyone around you and just be holy and love them. If they ask for your advice, give it; otherwise, lead with your example.
When you do something that hurts someone, ask forgiveness as soon as you apologize and don’t let it go until you hear them say, “I forgive you.” It may take some time, but you need to do that. Forgive everyone without waiting for them to ask.
Write thank-you and condolence and congratulation notes, even when no one else will. Remember the people you come into contact with and wish them a happy birthday. Be pro-active in your relationships and love people to an awesome level.
Keep a list of people you are praying for and let them know that you have prayed for them. Encourage (put heart into) every person you have contact with.
Good vs. Evil (Awesomely Holy vs. Mediocre)
Evil eats itself and the mediocre will drag you into their mediocrity. You will know someone who doesn’t want to be holy as soon as they utter the phrase, “I’m just hoping for Purgatory,” or “I’m probably going to Hell.” If they knew the devastation of those comments, they would never utter them.
Hang out with other people trying to be awesomely holy. When you encounter someone trying to be awesomely holy who has just fallen or stumbled, support him or her and offer encouragement. Stop trying to fit in with people so you can relate to them in the hopes that one day they might pursue awesome holiness. This means to stop laughing at dirty jokes, listening to gossip, and other things that people use to tear each other down.
Don’t get sucked into stupid arguments with people who just want to see you fall. Walk away. You will never win by yelling, screaming, crying, and debating someone into submission. You merely come across as a bully.
Try to look into what someone’s true motivation is for asking something of you; it usually is to benefit them. That doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do it, but keep in mind that you are trying to be awesomely holy, not ingratiate yourself with people.
Don’t compliment someone just to “be nice.” Be specific in your compliments to show that they aren’t empty of meaning; make them sincere.
Finally, remember that Jesus doesn’t care about where you have been, only where you are going. If you are debating whether others are trying to be awesomely holy or not, assume that they are.
I’m trying to do these things.
I’m failing a lot of the time.
I’m succeeding some of the time.
I’d love to know your thoughts about being awesomely holy.