A Wisdom for the Mature
Oh, you are so immature. This is an insult that has probably been said and heard by many. Usually, it is in response to immature behavior. And to be sure, becoming mature is not always something easy for human beings to achieve. And it is the case that maturity is often connected with gaining wisdom.
But becoming mature is hard. This might be particularly true for the spiritual life. What does a mature spiritual life look like? How do we achieve it? Today’s second reading helps us to understand the answer to this question, an important one for us to figure out.
For too many, their spiritual maturity is not much more advanced than it was when they were little. God is the big rule-keeper, we do little things to stay in line, but we do not really have to change much. We can create a spiritual practice where we neither experience conversion, or become any different than we were when we were little.
Or, we can also remain immature by viewing God as simple a nice old man who makes us feel better, comforts us, but never really asks anything of us that is difficult. And when it comes to the moral life, this God basically leaves us alone, never challenging us to do anything we do not really want to do. This “god” is more like a Teddy Bear that comforts us.
For us, to be among the spiritually mature, it is first to recognize that God is complete other, a mystery that is beyond our understanding. Therefore, any really simplistic image is really not only inaccurate, but perhaps spiritually dangerous. The Spiritual Wisdom given by God is something totally different than what the world today considers to be wise.
For Christians, Spiritual maturity comes not from memorizing a lot of information, or seeking a very comfortable life, but rather, from entering into a deep and mysterious relationship with God. Fortunately for us, this God is all-loving, only seeking for us what is best. This is true even if we do not really understand what is best for us, or even if we think we know what is best for us.
For us, the spiritual life is not about mysteries to be solved, but mysteries to be in relationship with, in our lives. And if we take the chance to be in this relationship with Jesus, then what receive is equally mysterious.
What eye has not seen, and ear has not heard, and what has not entered the human heart, what God has prepared for those who love him, this God has revealed to us through the Spirit.1 Corinthians 2:9
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