Love in Action

By Fr Richard Rohr’s Daily Meditation

The way to arrive and remain within “the force field of the Holy Spirit”, which is one way of describing consciousness–is both very simple and very hard: you’ve got to remain in love, with a foundational yes to every moment. You can’t risk walking around with a negative, resentful, gossipy, critical mind, because then you won’t be in the force field. You will not be a usable instrument. That’s why Jesus commanded us to love. It’s that urgent. It’s that crucial.

That love, as contemplatives learn, can begin in the mind or can be inhibited by the mind. You may have heard this quote–sometimes attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt:

Watch your thoughts; they become words.

Watch your words; they become actions.

Watch your habits; they become character.

Watch your character; it becomes your destiny.

Contemplation nips negativity, hatred, and violence in the bud. It begins by retraining your initial thoughts, because if you let the mind operate in a paranoid, angry, and resentful way, you aren’t going to get very far. You’re not going to see clearly. At the same time, if you spend your time only in contemplation without moving toward positive engagement, you end up with what many call spiritual constipation. I am afraid it is quite common.