Surrendering our Understanding
Understanding is a blend of intellectual knowledge and experiential wisdom. It consists not in critical analysis of facts, but in checking how true something is in the light of my own values and beliefs, true to my own experiences. Understanding depends on the quality and level of my intellect. It may vary from being right or wrong, wise or foolish.
Understanding is also one of the “seven gifts of the Holy Spirit”. When I pray God to “take and receive MY understanding”, it is my power of reasoning and discerning that I surrender. I do not want to be absorbed in MY ideas, desires and decisions, but to see through God’s eyes. In Ignatius’ experience at the Cardoner, “the eyes of his understanding were opened and… all things seemed new to him.” (Aut 30)
Through the gift of understanding the Spirit guides my power of reasoning and discerning. I not only accept the divine Presence intellectually but also experience it and “feel” the sacramental character of everything. I deepen my respect toward creation, nature and all my fellow humans.
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding” (Prov 3.6).