Daily Reflection
of Creighton University's Online Ministries
August 31st, 2010

Roc O'Connor, S.J.

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Tuesday in the 22nd Sunday in Ordinary Time
[432] 1 Corinthians 2:10b-16
Psalm 145:8-9, 10-11, 12-13ab, 13cd-14
Luke 4:31-37

We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, so that we may understand the things freely given us by God. And we speak about them not with words taught by human wisdom, but with words taught by the Spirit, describing spiritual realities in spiritual terms. Now the natural man does not accept what pertains to the Spirit of God, for to him it is foolishness, and he cannot understand it, because it is judged spiritually. 

Which spirit motivates me? Which spirit motivates you?

I hope that the Spirit of God leads, motivates, and shapes my words and actions. I intend that sort of direction. Upon reflection, however, I've come to recognize multiple motives for what I've done or said in the past. Will it be different in the future?

Recently, this sort of quandary has led me to reflect on the difference between intention and action. This is a somewhat related, but definitely connected sidebar.

For the most part, I know what I intend to do. I intend to:

• Communicate clearly and directly
• Do my share of housework
• Get enough sleep and exercise to stay healthy
• Pray every day
• Lighten my judgments on myself and others
• Be kind and gracious to my community

I'm sure you all have your list of intentions, of things to do or ways of doing things to put into practice. So, how does it all work for you? Always on task? Always following through?

I'll bet we're on the same page.

What this leads me to (intend to) do, is set a goal for closing the gap between intention and action in my life. I (intend to) do what I say I will do first by keeping track of my intentions, my statements of intention or promises. Next, I make a list and, like Santa, check it twice. I'm a list-maker, OK? It helps.

Then, as part of my Examen, I look at my follow through. And, I catch glimpses of the motives that drive me to renege on my intentions. That's where I (intend to) learn about the spirits that motivate me and seek purification.

What will you (intend to) do?

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