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Disorientation (Spiritual)

“How often do I sit at the feet of our Lord and attend to His every word? How can I expect to keep Him as my life’s center if I don’t really take time to focus on Him daily? I may say I don’t have time, but the fact is I am just disoriented—crashing into all sorts of things instead of focusing on God. Does this sound familiar?” (Melissa K. Tsongranis)

“Much of what our culture calls “orientation” is actually what we would call in the Church “disorientation”—the dizzying death blows of living life facing west, with our backs to Jesus, according to the ways of the world. The three letter word for this is “sin.” At baptism, the healing of disorientation begins by facing the direction of that sin—west—the way of the devil, the way of the desert, the way of the world, renouncing it three times, and even spitting upon it, and the devil! The Christian life then begins by “re-orientation”—“facing east again”—actually in the liturgical celebration and spiritually in our return to face Jesus Christ once again. Facing Jesus Christ, we can answer His invitation to draw near to him, however unworthy we may remain, even after renouncing our dizziness. True orientation is facing Jesus Christ, on His terms with His gifts of grace. It is the beginning of New Life. This is the gift of illumination that each of us has been given, the road to which we are each called to share with everyone who will listen.” (Fr. John Parker)

“We must dare to disorient ourselves from our usual schedules and preoccupations, turning away from the temptation to make the world our god and to use religion for our own self-centered purposes…we must struggle to abide with Christ as He offers up Himself for our salvation to the point of death. We must resist the temptation simply to disregard Him because we do not like what His Passion reveals about our need for healing that we cannot give ourselves.” (Fr. Philip LeMasters)

“…if we’re going to experience God in our life, sincerely and seriously, this involves a struggle, effort and pain in order to free ourselves from the passions which hold us back. Intellectual involvement with God and the things of God doesn’t require personal effort, however. Indeed, it can create spiritual pleasure, which may disorientate us. Empirical knowledge of the life of Christ begins with the Grace of the Holy Spirit and is confirmed by our ascetic efforts which demonstrate our desire to experience the beauty, and the ‘something else’, which belong to the world which his life gives us. This is why, apart from the negative messages which we may be getting from our surroundings, as regards the theological and spiritual situation, our desire and real longing to know the Truth and to be brought to Christ will define the ‘taste, which he will grant us, as a starting-point for us to go on to taste many, varied and great experiences of his presence.” (Fr. Andreas Agathokleous)

“In the general disorientation of the present age, Christians are called upon to become signposts for other people, through their way of life. This presupposes continuous self-control, so that all our choices and actions are in accordance with the will of Go. It requires a willingness on the part of Christians to listen, at every moment of their life, to what God is asking of them, and for them to be able to repeat Mary’s words: ‘Behold the servant of the Lord; let it be to me in accordance with your word’. Then the words with which Christ’s closes the Gospel reading for the feast will apply to them, too: ‘Blessed are they who hear the word of God and keep it’.” (Miltiadis Konstantinou)


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