While I have often questioned religion, I have experienced some lessons that did resonate positively and therefore has helped strengthen my faith. I’m sure you’ve experienced today’s mindful practitioners of motivation and better living: Napoleon Hill, Steven Covey, Deepak Chopra, Tony Robbins or even the many “Top 5 ways to be a better person” lists you find on social media. However, before I heard of them, I learned about the 7 virtues or gifts from the Holy Spirit. Virtues to be asked for and used to help guide you to a better life experience. The general premise is that by having and using wisdom, knowledge and understanding as the foundation of how you conducted yourself, you lift yourself to a higher level and become more in tune with you.
I’ve often prayed or focused on these…especially when I needed a little extra help…and I often do. I offer them as a reminder, or a first time look. The descriptions are my interpretations that may or may not align with traditional perspectives. The same goes for the concept of how these are to be used…it’s my perspective. Having said that, I believe all of these support personal integrity and good conduct…whatever you consider “good”.
WISDOM…a virtue we could all use more of, either from ourselves and many times from others. Wisdom is recognizing the real value of persons, events and things; a mature perspective that shares with others in relevant and meaningful ways; nurturing perspective. Wisdom is our “knowing”, when we are really in tune and focused with our heart and soul.
UNDERSTANDING…provides perspective and insights into the truths and faiths that guide you to make the right choices based on how well you are aware of the relationships you have with yourself, with others, and how they relate to the universe and God.
COUNSEL…also know as Good Judgement, this virtue seeks doing and being in a way that is right, that is just. It is listening to your heart to know the truth, not to the myriad opinions of right and wrong. It looks to your spirit and your God to guide you and confirm your decisions because they resonate with what is in your heart…
FORTITUDE…Courage. With Wisdom, Understanding and the benefit of Counsel, you can proceed in a knowing way that will free you to exist where you are meant to be. However we sometimes need to ask for the courage necessary to act on those thoughts, words and or actions to get us to that level…Fortitude is a little help to walk the talk.
KNOWLEDGE…those details that give you the ability to deeply understand what is being asked of you and more importantly, to understand and know how to respond in a way that is beneficial for all involved. As we search for meaning, knowledge will helps define or sharpen our perspective.
PIETY…one asks for Piety when they are fearful of losing their faith or their ability to be faithful to themselves, to their God or to those important souls in their lives. It is the courage to maintain your resolve when the events and experiences of the day are doing their best to wear down your faith.
WONDER and AWE…a call out to what inspires us. A reminder to ensure we continuously experience the power and beauty of the world and of the LOVE that surrounds us in all ways. Experiencing and knowing the Love from our hearts is to be shared and thus multiplied, Love from our God that keeps us safe, keeps us worthy. Wonder and awe is knowing that all of the universe is conspiring and inspiring to lift us up.
I know my judgement and experience is always better when I do exercise these gifts and my goal is to always be better with each one. I’ve learned (and believe) that Wisdom, Understanding, Counsel and Knowledge help us to understand our purpose…the whispering of our hearts…God’s will. Courage, Piety, Wonder and Awe are used to help us to listen to what we know, and follow when we hear our hearts…
Thank you for reading…