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How to align our gaze of the world with the gaze of Christ

Jezus na krzyżu

Denys Trofimov | Shutterstock

Philip Kosloski - published on 02/23/24

Jesus looks with compassion upon the world and one of our goals in life is to align our gaze with his, so that we see the world in the exact same way.

From our human point of view, we are tempted to look at the world with a gaze of “disgust.” We see all the problems in the world and are revolted by them.

On the other hand, when Jesus looks at the world, he looks at it with kindness, compassion and mercy.

How can we conform our gaze with Jesus’ gaze?

Pope Benedict XVI gave his thoughts on this topic in his Lenten message in 2006. He first laments how selfishness prevails in many parts of society.

In the face of the terrible challenge of poverty afflicting so much of the world’s population, indifference and self-centered isolation stand in stark contrast to the “gaze” of Christ.

He then suggests the antidote to this worldview.

Fasting and almsgiving, which, together with prayer, the Church proposes in a special way during the Lenten Season, are suitable means for us to become conformed to this “gaze”. The examples of the saints and the long history of the Church’s missionary activity provide invaluable indications of the most effective ways to support development.

For Pope Benedict XVI, he believed that an interior conversion was necessary in order to facilitate a more Christ-like exterior view of the world.

Those who act according to the logic of the Gospel live the faith as friendship with God Incarnate and, like Him, bear the burden of the material and spiritual needs of their neighbors. They see it as an inexhaustible mystery, worthy of infinite care and attention. They know that he who does not give God gives too little; as Blessed Teresa of Calcutta frequently observed, the worst poverty is not to know Christ. Therefore, we must help others to find God in the merciful face of Christ. Without this perspective, civilization lacks a solid foundation.

He further explains, “In turning to the Divine Master, in being converted to Him, in experiencing His mercy through the Sacrament of Reconciliation, we will discover a ‘gaze’ that searches us profoundly and gives new life to the crowds and to each one of us.”

If we want to look at the world with the gaze of Christ, we need to experience an authentic interior conversion of the heart.

Tags:
BibleLentPope Benedict XVI
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