So many things can arouse our curiosity, and for just as many reasons. Look at the picture of the little miss and the goldfish. She seems just as curious about the fish as the fish is about her. Both are gaining information that will be stored and used as the occasion arises.
We too can be curious about what we do not know and want to receive more information. Such curiosity is beneficial and as we grow can increase until we shut it off. Closing it down is when we lose some of the spontaneity of newness. Seeing things as children do keeps the wonder in us alive.
The picture of the other pair shows a very different kind of curiosity. One is a predator and the other the prey. The kitten is focused on the fish, not to learn something but to satisfy hunger. The fish is as far from the kitten as possible and facing away as if not seeing the predator would make the danger less. And danger it is.
We also run from or try to ignore danger, while it creeps closer to us. Most dangers we have in our daily lives are not life threatening as far as our physical life goes. But the danger to our spiritual life can be in jeopardy. It is necessary to be on guard against things that seep into our souls and undermine the link between our patient, loving God and us.
Those things are as unique to each of us as our DNA. We all have our weak spots and the dangers we face will surely aim for those. It may be the books we read, the movies we watch or the interaction with people who soon have a greater influence on us than we thought. Be on guard then. Flee if you must, or at least put up barriers between you and the anything that weakens you. The strongest barrier is Prayer. Nothing is stronger than the mind and will at prayer. If we cultivate that, we will have enough curiosity about God’s place in our lives that danger will fall by the wayside.
This is not an easy task. The mind can easily determine and decide what is best. The will, that wishy-washy will-o-the-wisp takes much bridling if we are to tame it into following what the mind sees as good. Bit by bit we can do it, especially if we rely on the strength of our Brother Jesus, who wants to help us so much he died trying!
Peace and courage!
Oldenburg Franciscan Center
Sisters of St. Francis, Oldenburg