The Trust Walk – Letting the Holy Spirit be our Guide

The Trust Walk – Letting the Holy Spirit be our Guide June 8, 2019

On retreats as a teenager, I remember going on trust walks.  We were blindfolded and lead around by another person around obstacles, twists and turns, and through narrow doorways, the object being to instill trust and confidence in God through the one leading.  The feeling of loss of control and helplessness is overwhelming and frightening.  At every step, we felt as though we would fall down into a gaping hole or hit a stone wall.  In the beginning, it could be so unnerving that we would refuse to move one step.  Cautiously, gradually, as the walk progressed, we began to trust our partner and take quicker steps.  Learning to listen to the direction of the Holy Spirit can be like embarking on a trust walk.  We often have to proceed forward blindly, not knowing or understanding why he is asking certain things of us.  God’s ways are not our ways. If we choose the narrow path and follow his voice instead of the voice of the world or the devil, he will lead us to true joy and happiness. We have to let go of our human understanding and trust what seems illogical or counterintuitive at times when the Holy Spirit is our guide.

“Trust in the LORD with all your heart,

on your own intelligence do not rely;

In all your ways be mindful of him,

and he will make straight your paths.

Do not be wise in your own eyes,

fear the LORD and turn away from evil.” (Prov 3:5-7)

The Holy Spirit is that directing friend whom we attach to and allow to guide us on our journey through life:  over the obstacles, around the pitfalls, through the difficulties.  He enlightens our minds with truth and wisdom, enabling us to make wise decisions. The term “Spirit” comes from the Hebrew word ruah, which means breath, air, wind. Although we can not see the Holy Spirit or audibly hear him, he directs us by speaking to our hearts and consciences when we spend time in prayer, through scripture, and through the words of holy spiritual directors.   We can listen to the voice of the Holy Spirit, or we can choose to ignore it and follow our own wills and desires. If we truly love God and seek his will, we will be docile to the Spirit. Can we trust enough to allow the fire of the Holy Spirit to penetrate our lives and take control?

On Pentecost, the Holy Spirit was poured out upon the disciples, Christ’s Passover is fulfilled, and the Holy Trinity is revealed.  “Since that day, the Kingdom announced by Christ has been open to those who believe in him: in the humility of the flesh and in faith, they already share in the communion of the Holy Trinity. By his coming, which never ceases, the Holy Spirit causes the world to enter into the “last days,” the time of the Church, the Kingdom already inherited though not yet consummated.” (CCC 732) Pentecost is considered the birthday of the Church, when Jesus poured out the Spirit on the apostles so they had the courage and conviction to proclaim the truth.  We still receive the power and confidence of the Holy Spirit today when we ask for it.  However, we have to desire it more than we desire our own wills.  Are we really seeking God and his will, or are we slaves to our own passions and preferences?  This is a question we must ask ourselves daily and moment by moment.

Preceding the descent of the Holy Spirit, the apostles gathered in prayer. When Jesus appeared to the disciples on Pentecost, they were frightened and distressed from fear of the Jews.  As he came to be with them, the first words he uttered were “Peace be with you.”  To emphasize his desire for them to be at peace, he repeated himself and offered them peace a second time.  When we are fearful and afraid, we can call on the Holy Spirit, whom we have received in Baptism and Confirmation, and receive the same peace the disciples had on that first day of the week. Through the Holy Spirit, God gives us courage, strength, and power – not the self-centered, ambitious power of the world, but the greater power of participating in God’s plan for our lives and our salvation and the courage to spread his Kingdom to others.

As we celebrate Pentecost, let’s pray to ask the Holy Spirit to guide our every step and decision so that we can cooperate with God’s plan for our lives:

Oh Holy Spirit, You are the Third Person of the Blessed Trinity. You are the Spirit of truth, love and holiness, proceeding from the Father and the Son, and equal to Them in all things. I adore You and love You with all my heart. Teach me to know and to seek God, by whom and for whom I was created. Fill my heart with a holy fear and a great love for Him. Give me compunction and patience, and do not let me fall into sin. 

Increase faith, hope and charity in me and bring forth in me all the virtues proper to my state of life. Help me to grow in the four cardinal virtues, Your seven gifts and Your twelve fruits. 

Make me a faithful follower of Jesus, an obedient child of the Church and a help to my neighbor. Give me the grace to keep the commandments and to receive the sacraments worthily. Raise me to holiness in the state of life to which You have called me, and lead me through a happy death to everlasting life. Through Jesus Christ, our Lord.

Grant me also, O Holy Spirit, Giver of all good gifts, the special favor for which I ask {name special petition}, if it be for Your honor and glory and for my well being. Amen. 

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