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How can we keep our peace of heart as Catholics? Try these 6 tips

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Magnús Sannleikur - published on 07/30/21

These ideas can inspire you to live with the peace that Christ promised to leave His followers.

In these troubled times, many people feel disoriented and on edge, unable to find the peace that comes from Christ. These 6 tips can help us rediscover this gift that the Lord gave us before ascending to his Father: “Peace I leave with you, my peace I give to you. “(Jn 14:27)

1Flee the media whirlwind

Our senses are constantly assaulted by words, sounds, and images. We must extract ourselves from this sensory commotion to find the repose that Christ offers. Getting away from it allows us to create the atmosphere of silence in which prayer is born. 

“Be still and know that I am God!” (Ps 46:11). Addicted to our smartphones, computers, or other tablets and televisions, we enter into realms where unreality and illusion reign. Indeed, we’ve become slaves to technologies that were originally created to serve us, even if we tend not to admit it. 

Of course, not everything in the media is bad, and we cannot leave the field entirely open to those who deny or ignore the Gospel. But let’s not fool ourselves: If we spend more time consuming content online than before God in prayer, we need to examine our priorities. And who among us doesn’t need to rebalance our lives from time to time?

2Live the liturgy, don’t constantly dispute it

The Church offers us the liturgy as a means of initiation into the mysteries of God. We should be careful not to spoil it by “politicizing” it with endless debates. This doesn’t mean that we shouldn’t react to what we consider inappropriate; there are always opportunities to promote a liturgy worthy of God’s greatness, and it would be a shame to miss them. 

On the other hand, constant bickering about sacred things is not without danger. If certain rites or customs are faulty, they will eventually be abandoned. There is legitimate variety in the liturgical expression of the Church, and not every acceptable practice is pleasing to everyone. Perhaps what seems to us to be flawed actually has some merit. 

In any case, a holy life is the best witness we can give to the transforming power of the liturgy celebrated properly. Holiness is impossible without charity, and charity does not impose, is not vindictive, and “does not insist on its own way” (1 Cor 13:5).

3Guard against the spirit of contention

There are times when we’re called to give a calm but frank testimony of our faith, but it’s not every day. Generally speaking, it’s better to avoid engaging in bitter debates with non-believers or more “fragile” brothers.

“Remind them of this, and warn them before God that they are to avoid wrangling over words, which does no good but only ruins those who are listening.” (2 Tim 2:14)

Let us rather allow the witness of the cross and of Christ manifested in our actions convince those who need to be convinced. 

Restraint is all the more necessary when it comes to controversies concerning doctrine or the institution of the Church. These issues are often intractable and have no ready-made answers. Addressing them only stirs up passions unnecessarily.

When we begin a discussion, let’s avoid useless polemics and encourage a healthy conversation around “whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is pleasing, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence and if there is anything worthy of praise” (Phil 4:8).

4Put politics into perspective

Like all citizens, we have to fulfill our civic obligations, and as Christians, it’s good that we bring the message of Christ into the public arena.

However, we have to remember not to politicize everything. There is a time and a place for politics, as for everything else.

Let’s keep in mind that no political movement or personality speaks for our faith. In short, “do not put your trust in princes, in mortals, in whom there is no help” (Ps 146:3), but let us remember that “our citizenship is in heaven” (Phil 3:20).

5Do not cause your brothers and sisters to stumble with divisive opinions

Christ’s death and salvation through the cross are “scandalous” (cf. 1 Cor 23; Gal 5:11). The proclamation of a crucified Messiah makes no sense to many people.

The path to Christ is not easy. Therefore, let’s try not to clutter the path of our brothers with divisive words, especially when they concern issues that are not of fundamental importance for salvation. 

“Let us therefore no longer pass judgment on one another, but resolve instead never to put a stumbling block or hindrance in the way of another” (Rom 14:13).

Of course, sometimes it’s necessary to say things straightforwardly. But how often do we hurt Christ and our neighbor under the valiant pretext of “saying things frankly”?

Not all truths are good to tell, especially when they can hurt our brothers. Often it is better to keep quiet than to discredit the Good News by making unnecessary outrageous remarks. 

6Dedicate Sunday to God and not to the world

Sundays give us the opportunity to pause and absorb the light of Christ and then shine it out into the world. Yet we often neglect this opportunity, preferring to play sports, run errands or do nothing at all.

Of course, it’s legitimate to meet some of the demands of daily life, but it’s also good to make Sunday a day apart, devoting it to activities that promote reflection and praise. This will help us to recharge our batteries and get a taste of eternal life.

There’s a reason behind the commandment to “keep the Lord’s Day holy.” After all, we’re creatures who are incarnate in time. If we don’t give God time to meet us and dwell with us, we won’t have intimacy with Him.

Let’s strive to make Sunday a day dedicated to giving thanks to the Lord and singing for joy to the name of Him who made us, for He is so good! (Ps 91:4)

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AnxietyCatholic LifestyleMental HealthVirtue

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