Tenui Nec Dimittam

“I have taken hold and I will not let go”
A reflection


In a world of individualism and egoism, I still hold onto the “I”. It is “I” who is committed, it is “I” who has taken hold, it is “I” who will not let go. The personal God: “I am who I am,” expects a personal answer: “I have taken hold and I will not let go”. The Oblate gives this answer. I commit myself as Oblate of St. Francis de Sales; it is my commitment. Our common commitment requires individual commitments and relationships with God. Community lives from a group of committed people who are willing, ready, and able to commit themselves individually. I do not hide in community, I do not go with the flow, wait till others are doing it. I am called, I answer! The “I” in the Oblate motto calls exactly for this. It depends on me and my relationship with God.

“Have taken hold”

The present perfect tense is used to describe past events when we think more of their effect in the present than of the action itself. Oblates live in the present moment. I have had a God experience. I have discovered his love for me. I have grasped with my heart, not with my brain, the life giving rope that God has been throwing at me in the waters of life. I experienced it, and I have taken hold of it. But what matters is that now I am connected with Him. To have taken hold shows a firmness and trust. I have caught the rope, the life giving rope, not with my hands, but with my heart. I cling unto it with my heart. My hands are free to work accordingly, connected with God, for God and his projects. The heart of God and my heart are connected, firmly, by his love for me, but also because I have experienced this love and am now answering to it.

“I will not let go!”

Experience calls for a resolution. What I experienced cannot remain without consequence in my life. Once the heart is full, it starts overflowing, abundantly, sincerely, strongly and unconditionally. The resolution not to let it go doesn’t sound very psychological. How often do I have to let go things? I can let go everything but Him, God, his Love. Not letting him go implies availability for everyone else, for everything else. His love doesn’t restrict, it widens - mystery of Oblate Life. The decision to stick to Him frees me. I become available, I can offer myself, I become an Oblate, and I live. I have taken hold and I will not let go. Never. DSB

Fr. Sebastian Leitner OSFS

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