Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Examination of conscience: The first commandment

Pamphlets and various other guidelines abound on the subject of examining one's conscience prior to Confession -- or on a daily basis whether or not the Sacrament is received.

I've always found the Ten Commandments to be about as helpful as you can get. (God knows what He's doing.)

The Word of God, as I understand it, is alive. And so, as we ponder the sec, here...

(I'm talking about The Ten Commandments as understood by the Catholic Church. Don't get too bogged down on this, but for some reason, which we needn't go into here, there are slight differences in the wording of the Commandments in many Protestant sects.)

...thanks for your patience. Let's concentrate on the First Commandment:

I am the Lord Thy God. Thou shalt not have strange gods before Me.

Okay. So as I'm contemplating this, I pleased to realize that I haven't worshipped Baal since my last Confession, nor is my home filled with lares and penates (and no, don't you tell me that my statues of the Virgin or Crucifixes fall under that category).

But is that enough? No it isn't. There are ample opportunities to sin against the First Commandment every day. Some are subtle. Some aren't so subtle. Some are downright blatant but sorta "acceptable."

Help me out here. In what ways am I (or you) susceptible in breaking the First Commandment?