A Short Meditation on Truth, as Inspired by a Commercial

truth word in mixed vintage metal type printing blocks over grunge wood

Even in a relativistic culture we like to think categorically about a lot of things. Is a person good or bad? Is an idea liberal or conservative? Are we a divided nation or a united one?

Truth be told, we are all a mixed bag, individually and collectively. God alone is wholly good. Even in the midst of our struggles and flaws there still lurks something good, something true and beautiful. There are also many times when we must frankly admit that some things are true and some are false, some are right and some are wrong.

The genius of Catholicism, often not appreciated by our opponents, is that careful distinctions are a hallmark of our Sacred Tradition and teachings. We insist that there are absolute and immutable truths, but we also hold that some teachings are not absolute and admit of distinctions or need to be balanced by other truths. For example, Jesus said that He came to give us peace (Jn 14:27), but He also said, “I have not come to bring peace, but a sword” (Mat 10:36). Thus, context and distinctions are often important, but they are in service of an absolute truth. In this case, the absolute truth is that no real or lasting peace can exist apart from the Truth, which is Jesus Christ, for He says, “I am the Truth” (Jn 14:6).

As we navigate an increasingly tense and divided world, our insistence on absolute truths as well as distinctions becomes more important. When are discussions fruitful and when are they not? What can we tolerate and what must we refuse to tolerate? What is the distinction between acceptance and approval?

The questions could go on, but the point is that we must be very thoughtful in such matters. Knee-jerk reactions must give way to reflection and careful consideration.

The following video does a good job of reminding us of the complexity of division and unity.


3 Replies to “A Short Meditation on Truth, as Inspired by a Commercial”

  1. Peace is defined by the Modern Catholic dictionary [in part] as: “The tranquillity of order.” We know from Scripture and the Catechism that God is a God of order – not chaos. The Peace that Jesus gives us is not as the world gives us through moral compromise, but right order by grace by way of a battle that takes place inside each one of us to do good – and avoid evil/sin.

    So when we go the right “Way,” [Jesus] the Holy Spirit empowers us to have a genuine love for our family and we tell those we claim to “love,” the truth: ‘Don’t engage in homosexual actions son, as that will separate you from God – Hell is real and because I love you I don’t want you ending up there. It is a place of unspeakable torment and hatred.’ Those kinds of truths [Two Edged Sword] will necessarily cause short term divisions. So what?!? If I really love my brother as myself I don’t want to end in Hell so if I were blind and moving towards a pit I would want someone to risk offending me to tell me to STOP! If I got angry with them, and said mean things to them, and did not want anything more to do with them – I would be grateful if they continued to pray for me and do penance in hope that I might one day repent and make it Home to my Fathers House (Heaven). That is how I would want to be treated. If you really “love,” someone, wouldn’t you trade all the days between now and your death for the false “compromised” temporal earthly peace you may currently enjoy for an Eternal Peace – for one chance, just one chance that your son, daughter, mother, or father be set free? Now don’t misunderstand me I strive to maintain a relations so once they know where I stand I don’t continue beating them with the truth – I’m “watchful” for when they “ask” for it though. Then you give to ’em – straight! But they have to know where you stand. We have to initially make clear that as taught in Ezekiel that a “Sword,” is coming! Repent and believe! In patience, and kindness (authentic concern). If we lose houses, mothers, fathers, sons, daughters, friends, and lands – if we give up EVERYTHING for Jesus the punchline is and “with persecutions” too. Jesus tells us in Scripture we’ll be given a hundred fold in this time and the next of houses, lands, and all those relationships mentioned. That is discipleship.

    As I see it a major problem today is the lack of clarity in defining terms. There are likely as many definitions of the word “peace,” as there are people sitting in the pews on Sunday. So if peace is a ‘warm fuzzy’ to you – you really don’t get challenged when the words peace, love, and joy are preached. If they are ignorant – nothing changes. My Faith teaches me that peace is found only in God’s will. That unity and/or peace subsist only in the truth. Outside the truth, in lies, you will find no unity, no solidarity, and no peace! You will find darkness.

    Jesus told us where I am there my servant will be. Where was he? On a Cross. On – a – Cross! Laying down His Life for His friends – for His human enemies. He literally died for each one of us personally. We have not only not suffered to the point of blood – but today we often don’t want to suffer even a little sweat, or anxiety, or temporal division. How many relationships have we lost because we dared tell the truth? Are we indeed persecuted? Jesus went all the way to death on a Cross opening the “Way” of Salvation. You and I need to repent of our sins and believe in Him – Jesus – the Truth, the Pearl of Great Price, the Sacred Deposit of the Doctrine of the Faith! All that is truly good, true, and beautiful subsists in He (Jesus) Who is the True, the Good, and the Beautiful – God, The Holy Trinity.

  2. It seems one needs to work hard (and some do) to confuse what God tells us in His Word and through His Church. That in following Jesus Christ we have all that you say, Holiness, Peace, Love, Joy, Truth, Light and all that brings us and heals us and delivers us to Love one another and to know and Love God. In the world there is confusion, hate, rejection, perversions, greed, violence, divisions and deceptions and all that separates us from a sincere Holy Love towards one another and from the Love of God. Yes, if we follow Jesus Christ we have Peace even in a world of division far from Peace that causes us many tribulations. John 16: 33 I have said this to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world.”

  3. I’ve come to find peace, even in the most violent (and not just physical violence but, also emotional and verbal) situations through the “Serenity Prayer” which is often used among Twelve Step groups, often only using the first four lines.
    It took a lot of hard work to bring myself to be able to focus on this and, I have come to wonder if this is what was meant by “My Peace” and the lack of other peace in such as division of friends and families.
    I also wonder if the division, described in Matthew 10:36, is about all the contention which accompanied the early evangelization.

    God grant me the serenity
    To accept the things I cannot change;
    Courage to change the things I can;
    And wisdom to know the difference.

    Living one day at a time;
    Enjoying one moment at a time;
    Accepting hardships as the pathway to peace;
    Taking, as He did, this sinful world
    As it is, not as I would have it;
    Trusting that He will make all things right
    If I surrender to His Will;
    So that I may be reasonably happy in this life
    And supremely happy with Him
    Forever and ever in the next.


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