Dudley Hilton

How confusing... Last week we were being told of the perils of indifference and this week we have to practise it! Confusing indeed – but not quite so much when you allow for their different contexts. Then it becomes apparent that last week’s indifference isn't the same as this week’s.

Last week was about the “neither hot nor cold” indifference of the Laodiceans, the “so what, I don’t care” approach to life. This week, though, it is used in the context that five centuries ago Ignatius of Loyola (the founder of the Jesuits and one of the spiritual greats) used it when he told us that we should strive for “a complete indifference with regard to all created things”.

This does not negate our responsibility for stewardship of creation, but means that we make ourselves truly free by depending entirely on God, trusting him completely. If we do, what we want – and what others want of us – gets relegated to second place behind what God wants us to do and be.

This does of course mean that we have to start listening to God, and - harder still - acting on what we hear him say. But as Paul said to the Philippians two thousand or so years ago:

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.