Last Sunday our granddaughter Charlise was confirmed in the Catholic Church. The bishop’s message was that it was indeed a special day and certainly deserving of the pomp and circumstance on display. However he reminded those being confirmed that he wasn’t dispensing magic but instead he was conveying the sacrament that was promised them at baptism. He also reminded these young people that Confirmation wasn’t just something to achieve but that by accepting God’s gift of the Holy Spirit they had an obligation to be transformed. To be agents of positive change in our world. Pretty heady stuff for 13 & 14 year-olds.
I’m most proud of the fact that Charlise chose Confirmation on her own – it wasn’t forced on her by her parents; she wasn’t pressured by peers. She chose to receive this sacrament and make this commitment. It is her choice. A sign of her maturity.
Scripture tells us that the fruits of the Spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.
I believe that Charlise will meet the challenge to be changed; to be transformed. She will be an advocate for social justice and peace. She will love those who are at times unlovable (including yours truly); bring joy to those in sadness and sorrow; bring peace to our world in her deliberate and thoughtful manner; afford patience to those most in need of understanding; show kindness to those who are hurting; goodness in her manner and in her unselfishness; faithfulness to God and to all God’s creatures; gentleness in her strength and determination; and self-control in her lifestyle choices.
Now I have to try to live up to her example. And pray for a little transformation of my own.
There are different kinds of spiritual gifts but the same Spirit; there are different forms of service but the same Lord; there are different workings but the same God who produces all of them in everyone. 1 Corinthians 12:4-6