In his daily homily on Nov. 14, Pope Francis warned against a misguided "spirit of curiosity" that can lead us away from God, stating that it is only through the spirit of wisdom that we are able to be close to him.
“Jesus says that the Kingdom of God does not come in a way that attracts attention: It comes by wisdom,” the Pope said during his homily.
His words were directed to those gathered in the St. Martha guesthouse of the Vatican for daily Mass.
Opening his reflections by recalling the day’s first reading from the Book of Wisdom, Pope Francis stated that the passage described “the state of the soul of the spiritual man and woman” and of true Christians, who live “in the wisdom of the Holy Spirit.”
“This wisdom carries them forward,” he explained, “with this intelligent, holy, single, manifold and subtle spirit.”
“This is journeying in life with this spirit,” underlined the Pope, “the spirit of God, which helps us to judge, to make decisions according to the heart of God. And this spirit gives us peace, always! It is the spirit of peace, the spirit of love, the spirit of fraternity.”
Holiness, is “exactly this,” expressed the pontiff, adding that this peace is exemplified in God’s request to Abraham to “walk in my presence and be irreproachable.”
Peace, he noted, means “to follow the movement of the Spirit of God and of this wisdom.”
However, turning to the day’s Gospel in which the Pharisees ask Jesus when the Kingdom of God will come, the Pope highlighted that in this reading “we find ourselves before another spirit, contrary to the wisdom of God: the spirit of curiosity.”
This spirit is manifested “when we want to be the masters of the projects of God, of the future, of things, to know everything, to have everything in hand,” he observed, citing the Pharisees’ question to Jesus as an example.
“Curious! They wanted to know the date, the day. … The spirit of curiosity distances us from the Spirit of wisdom because all that interests us is the details, the news, the little stories of the day.”
“It is the how,” the Pope continued, “oh, how will this come about? The spirit of curiosity is not a good spirit. It is the spirit of dispersion, of distancing oneself from God, the spirit of talking too much.”
Jesus, he went on to say, also “tells us something interesting: This spirit of curiosity, which is worldly, leads us to confusion.”
Curiosity can lead us to have the wrong focus, the Pope added, making us want to say, “But I know a visionary, who receives letters from Our Lady, messages from Our Lady.”
“But, look, Our Lady is the Mother of everyone!” he continued. “And she loves all of us. She is not a postmaster, sending messages every day.”
When we seek to find God on our own, saying that he is one place rather than another, or that he is with one person and not another, the Pope said, we distance ourselves “from the Gospel, from the Holy Spirit, from peace and wisdom, from the glory of God, from the beauty of God.”
It is the “action of the Holy Spirit” he noted, “which gives us wisdom and peace,” adding that “the Kingdom of God does not come in (a state of) confusion, just as God did not speak to the prophet Elijah in the wind” or “in the storm,” but “in the soft breeze, the breeze of wisdom.”
Pope Francis concluded his homily by affirming, “The Kingdom of God is among us” and that we must not “seek strange things” or “seek novelties with this worldly curiosity.”
“Let us allow the Spirit to lead us forward in that wisdom, which is like a soft breeze. This is the Spirit of the Kingdom of God of which Jesus speaks. So be it.”