I can’t begin to tell you how many times I have been riding in my car, walking in a store, talking to a friend, watching TV, looking at Facebook, or even just reading a book and been struck with an idea for a post for Catholic Sistas. There isn’t a single day that goes by that I don’t say to myself, “I should write about that!” Unfortunately, life gets in the way and I often forget what it was I wanted to write about. There have been times I have sent myself a text with a single word or a few words as potential reminders, I’ve written notes on receipts scavenged from my purse, and I’ve even told my kids, “Don’t let me forget this!” Still, most of the time those amazing stories get away from me. There have been times that I am left wondering what God wants me to share this time.
Thankfully I have a secret weapon… the Holy Spirit! Whenever I am going to write a story or an article I pray for God to guide me and the words I will share. I want His words to echo through my fingers as I type. I ask that God send his Holy Spirit to me to show me what it is that needs to be said. I’m sure there are many times that I bungle what it is He is trying to get me to share, but I try my best to allow His words to shine through.
So why is it that I am sharing this with you? I’ve been thinking a lot about social media and how with the advent of the internet we have seen a rise in people just saying whatever it is that is on their minds without regard to other people’s feelings. There seems to be a decline in manners and how we treat others. Perhaps in “real life” we wouldn’t be so bold as to say some of the things that we say online. The anonymity of the internet allows us to stand up for what we believe in but it also can lead to acting in an unkind or perhaps hateful manner. I have seen this so often when people argue over hot button issues like abortion, same sex marriage, the scandals within the Church, immigration, or gun laws to name a few.
When engaging in discussions on any topic, as Christians, we are called to be respectful of each other. One of the best ways to remain respectful is to ask God to send His Holy Spirit to guide our words, both in speech and in type. I have often seen people make comments like, “Wow, that’s so very Christian of you.” Or “Aren’t you supposed to be a Christian?” What we say and how we say it helps others either see us as Christians or makes them question if we truly are Christ’s disciples. Shouldn’t our actions and words be a reflection of Christ in our lives? We can speak the Truth with dignity, respect and love. We only need to ask for the Holy Spirit to guide all that we say and do. Of course we can ask for His help but we also have to accept the guidance that He sends us. Sometimes this is the hardest part!
Before engaging in a debate online, before defending your faith to others, before spreading God’s word, pray that God will send His Holy Spirit to be with you. Call upon the third person of the Trinity, the Holy Spirit, to guide you in all you say and do. When you do, Christ’s love will shine through you and those who you encounter will know you are filled with the Holy Spirit.
Breathe in me, O Holy Spirit, that my thoughts may be all holy.
Act in me, O Holy Spirit, that my work, too, may be holy.
Draw my heart, O Holy Spirit, that I love but what is holy.
Strengthen me, O Holy Spirit, to defend all that is holy.
Guard me, then, O Holy Spirit, that I always may be holy.