When the breath of the evening stills, and I lie down to close my eyes, I begin to wonder how I could be so unfaithful.
How is it that I can so easily turn from a God who does not turn from me? How is it that I can ignore a God who pays so much attention to me and cares so deeply about every minuscule detail of my life? How is it that I could neglect to spend time with a God who is always with me, everywhere I go, every step I take?
My heart longs to be with my Lover. I burn and thirst with desire for Him. And yet, I have a disease. It is not the disease of abject sinfulness – oh, how I wish it were, that glorious state of searching for eternal fulfillment, marred only by the fact that the heart is searching in the wrong direction. God has made some of the greatest saints out of some of the greatest sinners, by arresting the attention of their ever-wandering, ever-seeking hearts on the One Fulfillment of their desire. No, this disease is a great deal more insidious, a great deal more sickening, a great deal more crippling.
It is the disease of apathy. Lukewarmness. Tepidity. Being a room-temperature Christian, not compelled and driven enough to seek fulfillment in God or anything otherwise. I am an abject sinner, precisely because I am not such an abject sinner, nor a hallowed saint.
“To the angel of the church in Laodicea, write this:
‘The Amen, the faithful and true witness, the source of God’s creation, says this: “I know your works; I know that you are neither cold nor hot. I wish you were either cold or hot. So, because you are lukewarm, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth. For you say, ‘I am rich and affluent and have no need of anything,’ and yet do not realize that you are wretched, pitiable, poor, blind, and naked. I advise you to buy from me gold refined by fire so that you may be rich, and white garments to put on so that your shameful nakedness may not be exposed, and buy ointment to smear on your eyes so that you may see. Those whom I love, I reprove and chastise. Be earnest, therefore, and repent. Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, [then] I will enter his house and dine with him, and he with me. I will give the victor the right to sit with me on my throne, as I myself first won the victory and sit with my Father on his throne. Whoever has ears ought to hear what the Spirit says to the churches.”
“It hurts me to see the danger of lukewarmness in which you place yourself when you do not strive seriously for perfection in your state in life. Say with me: I don’t want to be lukewarm! Confige timore tuo carnes meas, pierce thou my flesh with thy fear: grant me, my God, a filial fear that will make me react!” – St. Josemaria Escriva, The Way, #326
“How are you going to get out of that state of lukewarmness and lamentable languor if you do not make use of the means? You struggle very little, and when you make an effort, you do so as if annoyed and uneasy. You even seem to hope that your feeble efforts will produce no results, so that you can then justify yourself and you will not have to make demands on yourself and others will not ask any more of you. It is your own will you are following, not God’s. If you don’t change in earnest you will neither be happy nor be able to obtain the peace you now lack. Humble yourself before God, and try really to want to.” – St. Josemaria Escriva, The Struggle, #146