Saturday, 28th Week in Ordinary Time           

            Jesus, in today’s gospel reading, says, “The one who blasphemes against the Holy Spirit will not be forgiven.” We blaspheme the Holy Spirit when we deny his grace, reject his assistance, or refuse to allow his light to penetrate our minds and hearts. Thus, we are unable to recognize sin – we do not see any sin in us – and because we do not recognize sin, we do not sense the need for forgiveness. We cannot be forgiven when we deny the Holy Spirit who alone can give us the grace of repentance and forgiveness.

            The Holy Spirit has also been given to us to enable us to activate all the gifts given us for our mission in this life. The gifts of the Holy Spirit are given not for our own egos, not for our own benefit, not for our own honor, but for the edification or the building up of the Church. St. Paul says in his Letter to the Ephesians: “The spiritual gifts are given for the equipping of the saints for the work of service to the building up of the Body of Christ.”

            In light of this, we must honestly examine ourselves and ask: How do we use our charisms, our God-given gifts and talents? Do we use them to build up the Church of God? Or only to blow up our egos? Do we use them to draw people into the divine life? Or only to draw attention to ourselves? Do we use them to actively share in the mission of Christ? Or only to pursue our selfish ambitions and interests? Do we use them for the common good? Or only to get ‘goods’ for ourselves – wealth, possessions, honors, prestige, pleasure? Do we use them to serve our sisters and brothers? Or only to serve multi-national corporations, or to make for ourselves profitable businesses, high-income professions, money-making careers?

            We may not be blaspheming the Holy Spirit in the sense of utterly rejecting his light to penetrate our hearts; but we may be ignoring his assistance in some other ways. We may be underusing the power the Holy Spirit gives us that is why we are not able to fully activate our charisms. Let us allow the Holy Spirit to come in and invade our lives that we may be able to make Christ as the center of our life and that we may be empowered to carry on his mission.

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