As we await the out pouring of the Holy Spirit at Pentecost, most Catholics are participating in a novena to the Holy Spirit. One novena, in its meditations, focuses on the seven gifts of the Holy Spirit, the relationship between Mary and the Holy Spirit and the Holy Spirit as the third person of the Blessed Trinity. I was asked by a parish to give a reflection on the gift of Right Judgment.
The gift of Right Judgment can be considered a sanctified “common sense”. With the aid of Wisdom and Understanding, we can make decisions that are informed by the First Cause and as a result we can discern between good and evil. Essentially, the Holy Spirit in this gift makes a person docile to the quiet inspirations of God that will lead them to their salvation and transformation in Christ. A good analogy to this is when we listen to the counsels of the Holy Spirit, we become like ships, sailing outwards with our sails open letting the breath of God direct our lives. That is why another name for the gift of Right Judgment is the gift of Counsel.
On a very simple level, we receive counsel to help make decisions in some of the more difficult situations: advice as to whether to take a job or not, whether or not we should marry a specific person etc. In the case of the gift of Counsel, we have God as our Counselor giving us advice in the decisions and situations that will help us to draw closer to Him. And if we want to be good counselors, good advice givers, then we need this gift to help us give good and sound advice to those who are seeking it. This is why it is important for all of us to have a spiritual director and the best quality in a spiritual director is one that gives advice that leads us to God and most of the time, this advice will lead to suffering. The closer we draw to God, the more we will have to suffer.
As we draw closer to Pentecost, let us continue to pray, “Come, Holy Spirit” guide us to our destination, to be with you in eternal beatitude, heaven.