Mental Reservations

OPUS DEI

MENTAL reservations are hidden, unexpressed thoughts that accompany our reactions to things, our statements and affirmations. They are simply kept in our mind for some reason. If the reason is good, like these thoughts are kept hidden out of charity and prudence, then they are good. But if they simply are negative and critical, then they are bad and can be dangerous to us.

Certainly, we cannot avoid these mental reservations since we cannot express in words and deeds everything that we have in our mind and heart. It could be because of our own personal limitations, or because of some doubts that we are still trying to sort out, or

because external factors and circumstances induce us to keep them to ourselves.

We should just be wary of those mental reservations that are negative and critical and intentionally kept hidden and unexpressed, because they can be poisonous to us. They prevent us from doing what we are supposed to do in those instances when we are visited by negative and critical thoughts.

These bad mental reservations tend to detach us from those who provoke them in us. Or we would just treat these mental reservation provocateurs with tolerance, indifference and coldness. We would find ourselves quiet when we happen to be with them and secretly finding ways to get away from them.

This, of course, is not theĀ  right way to deal with others. We are supposed to love everyone, including those who for one reason or another we do not like or who cause us some inconvenience.

What we should rather do, if we are to be consistent to our dignity as a human person and as a child of God, is to convert those bad mental reservations into reasons and occasions to love more those who provoke them.

These bad mental reservations are actually offering us golden opportunities to grow in the virtue of charity, which is what is proper to all of us. They invite us to expand our understanding of the virtue of charity. They prod us to raise our love for others to the next level.

They can require heroic efforts. But to be sure we can do it, because in the first place the grace of God of is always available, and that grace is actually given to us in abundance. We should just make the necessary adjustments in ourselves in terms of attitude and skills of how to deal with those with whom we may have serious differences and conflicts.

We just have to be more open-minded and big-hearted, always keeping a sporting spirit and a good sense of humor, and be flexible and resilient. We should not take ourselves too seriously, thinking that we are always right or that our views are always the right ones.