Why VS What For
Author: Staff | Source: Catholic.net
At some point in our lives we have had desires of all kinds. We wanted to have that "something" because we thought it would make us happy or that we would solve our problems when we were just going to satisfy our selfishness.
All human beings at one point in their lives face difficult times, such as suffering, a decision or the death of a loved one or an illness, hit the rough.
Recently something happened to me that gave me a great emotional shock.I had worked very hard for months just to achieve something in a professional level. According to me, all the time I had been investing and all the attitudes I had were enough to reach it, but they weren’t. At that time, I spoke with a relative about the different reasons that could be the answer to this situation that was not being given as I wanted.
That's when I stopped to think about the thin line between "why" and "what for".To know the difference is difficult and even more, it’s hard to find the meaning or to understand.Anyone can be disturbed and be sad, even angry, for not having obtained what they wanted. As human beings it is the most normal thing that happens to us.
Asking me those two questions in my head helped me to understand a little more about my role in this path. The result of that thought process was that I learned some important things: the first is to think What for? and second, to use the virtues that God has given us.
The first one is thanks to what they call virtues. There are several types and among them we have the theological and moral. From these we will see the theological are faith, charity and hope. Morals are justice, prudence, temperance, and fortitude. These virtues are gifts that God gives us to master the natural impulses like selfishness, pleasure and comfort.
Enjoy in hope, let us stand the suffering, be constant in prayer. (Romans 12, 12)
What is hope?
Hope is what gives us the certainty that one day we will live in eternal happiness and corresponds to that desire God has put in the heart of the humans.
With it we concrete the firm confidence that God will give us the graces we need because He loves us and because He is faithful to the promise. Based on security and His infinite power. Without it, we lose the vision of eternal life and we would not find that sense of transcendence. With hope I will be sure that my plans, if I put them in the hands of God, are not going to be uncertain because I have that security in future promised by the same God. What else but to fully trust in God?
A very clear character of the Bible that can teach us about hope is Job. Job was a man who had many things: he had cattle, a house, family and money. Then he proved to be faithful to God by getting rid of all his goods, suffering from deadly illnesses and even the death of their families. Still, he emerges triumphant from all these trials.
Personally, I have to work more on my humility. Perhaps others need to work on prudence or charity. In short, each one has other virtues to work on a little more. And they can be not just virtues, it can be a feeling or an attitude. This exercise made me discern which part was I supposed to work on.
What for or Why?
Instead of sitting down and asking God “why” something had happened to me, I began to ask myself the "what for"; And It was until then that I managed to understand what he was trying to tell me or explain me.
When we get to this moment, we have to ask those questions in the privacy of our bedroom or in our place of prayer and always lead them to God and not against him. God is that friend who is always there for us, who cares and advises us in the most fraternal way possible.
Knowing what our role is in a situation, is important to understand and trust that we have to learn. To have faith is to take that risk of blindness and enter into love, in spite of everything. I learned that I can work in my faith when I live humility in my relationship with God, recognizing that I am in need of him.
Every now and then, there are times when I can go back to the uncertainty, but then all I need is a moment of prayer and silence to continue having hope that everything will come out in the best way possible. In our silent prayer times, ask for the question "what for?". Let us humbly assume whatever the outcome is, be like Job when every bitter gulp has passed, and we show hope at every stage of our life.
Many times, we can get confused and not see any opportunity to be focused on just one thing. With the pass of time we will be improving our way of seeing things and understanding the step by step of what happens in our lives.
And I can assure you that when I have more faith and hope, the results come faster and more clearly.
"The Door of heaven is very low; Only the humble can enter by it "– St. Elizabeth Ann Seton