Charismatic lay Catholics are Catholics who have taken an extra step to reactivate the gifts of the Holy Spirit in them. The gifts of the Holy Spirit unfold progressively over a period of time.
It doesn’t mean the other things we do in the Catholic church do not make sense! We the Charismatic lay Catholics come in with an addition to the existing ways of growing and maintaining our faith.
The charisms of the Lord elevate us to spiritual levels we probably have never experienced. They come with disbelief, excitement, and the desire to see the gifts in action.
It’s hard to believe pages can flip over from not being able to pray for a sick person to performing a successful healing and deliverance session!
As much as we get taught once we join the Catholic Charismatic Renewal Movement, we are likely to forget the lessons learned.
So, what happens when we forget?
We begin to unknowingly make mistakes in the process of divine duty.
And this is when the sadness of Charismatic lay Catholics sets in.
To our amazement, we lose the power to use our God-given gifts.
So, what next!
Some of us opt to fake the charisms.
For lack of a better word to Charismatic lay Catholics, faking is too evident and it sucks. Instead of keeping the attendees wanting to attend more of our sessions, they just won’t come back!
It turns out we are not gathering the lost sheep, but scattering them more.
So, what can we do to reignite the gifts of the Holy Spirit?
When we want the Holy Spirit back!
As Charismatic lay Catholics, we need to be more vigilant when we receive the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
The richer we become, whether spiritually or materially, the more enemies we make. The worst of them all is the enemy with self. That’s what we need to shun for the Lord to restore the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
This is how the enemy within steals the gifts of the Holy Spirit from us.
He whispers to us that we are better gifted than other Charismatic lay Catholics.
And boom! We get caught just like that!
Then pride slips in and introduces its companion - competition.
Once we begin to compare ourselves to other Charismatic lay Catholics, we are likely to talk negatively about them.
Surprisingly, the downfall will not begin immediately as God in His merciful nature gives us time to shape up.
By the time we realize we have lost the Holy Spirit, a lot of unpleasant events have unfolded over a period of time. They create loopholes for the devil to add more spice to his work to keep making matters worse.
To rise again, we need to carefully understand the hierarchical spiritual positions.
What God says about Charismatic Lay Catholics in 1 Corinthians 12: 28-31
The scripture says:
In the church, God has put all in place: in the first place apostles, in the second place prophets, and in the third-place teachers; then those who perform miracles, followed by those who are given the power to heal or to help others or to direct them or to speak in strange tongues. They are not all apostles or prophets or teachers. Not everyone has the power to work miracles or heal diseases or speak in strange tongues or explain what is said. Set your hearts, then, on the more important gifts.
When we understand this scripture in the right context, we will never dare allow unnecessary friction among ourselves in the name of competition. Competing is a sin. It makes us use the gifts of the Holy Spirit not for the glory of God, but for people to see what we can do.
Here is a Catholic perspective of apostolic succession well explained.
So, what am I trying to make clear here!
As much as some gifts are so pronounced, in that, everyone can see them in play, the gifts used in privacy or in silence are equally important.
Take canceling for example:
It’s an important gift for mental health checks to demystify the wrong worldly insinuations about depression and other mental health problems.
But don’t we realize canceling takes place in privacy?
Every gift saves the person in need at the point of need.
Now, we have reminded ourselves of the cause of competition born from pride. We can now be able to control ourselves better when we bounce back with our gifts in action.
But we can’t end this without touching on why it takes too long to bounce back!
Pride of Supremacy
Remember I said earlier, that we sometimes get caught up in feeling big and looking down upon people whose gifts may not appear important.
Now that we have gotten ourselves out of that and are ready to keep off the temptation to despise anyone, we've got to do one more thing!
A detailed well-prepared confession is a must for Charismatic lay Catholics. A casual confession is an addition to the already weighty sins. Avoiding confession is even worse.
As much as we may make a decision to watch the above Bible scripture carefully, we have to deal with the mess we already created.
Sadly, if we do not mend the mess, we will never get back the envied gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Charismatic Lay Catholics in relation to Samson and Delilah
It's outrightly clear Delilah had an easy time trampling on Samson when Samson exposed himself to her. When his hair got cut, he lost his gift.
Here's what the scripture says:
Judges 16: 18 - 20: When Delilah realized that he had told her the truth, she sent a message to the Philistine kings and said, "Come back just once more. He has told me the truth. Then they came and brought the money with them. Delilah lulled Samson to sleep in her lap and then called a man who cut off Samson's seven locks of hair. Then she began to torment him, for he had lost his strength. Then she shouted, "Samson! The Philistines are coming!" He woke up and thought, "I'll get loose and go free, as always." He did not know that the Lord had left him.
It is sad waking up to the realization that the gifts of the Holy Spirit are no more in us.
As Charismatic lay Catholics, when we live lives that dishonor the Lord, we easily get deceived by the Delilah's around us. Some of them come in form of thoughts and others through people.
Getting back the Gifts of the Holy Spirit – in a few words
We as Charismatic lay Catholics need to immediately perform an examination of conscience when we feel we are losing the gifts of the Holy Spirit.
Accepting our mistakes helps us pick up our pieces faster and carry on with the Lord’s work.
Our prayer life needs to become more intense with respect to private covenant time with the Lord.
As we patiently wait for the restoration of the gifts of the Holy Spirit, let’s not fake it. It paints all the Charismatic lay Catholics the wrong way.
Losing the gifts of the Holy Spirit is not a shame but a lesson to bounce back much stronger.
Now, what good and bad experiences have you had in the Catholic Charismatic ministry? Every lesson is a step ahead for the person it is intended to reach. Your comments will help add important points to this list.