Saint Francis is one of the most significant figures in Christianity. Most texts about this individual explore his teachings, wisdom, and legacy. However, Francis’s life was not limited to religious service, and it should be considered a lesson on its own. Francesco experienced drastic changes in his attitude toward the world, and this transition is discussed in several parts of this week’s readings. His story demonstrates that any person can change by God’s will, and the individual decides to accept proposed alterations. However, this idea is not the only crucial thought that may and should be understood from the story of the life of Saint Francis. There are many lessons that he learned, and now it is the turn of all people to accept and follow them.
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Surprisingly, Francis was not born in a family of utterly religious people. His father was a merchant and a businessperson, so the boy lived a rich life during his childhood. He helped his father sell cloth on the market and was a lavish and arrogant individual. Who would have thought that he ends up becoming one of the most critical persons in the Christian religion? However, from his early days, God had communicated with Francis through dreams and other signs. After a turning point in his life when Francis left his wealthy family and was sent to war (in my opinion, by both God’s and Francis’s desire), he returned and re-evaluated his whole life.
There are several crucial claims and ideas of Francis that seem simple but can be considered true gifts, and it is impossible not to pay attention to them. As for me, the most crucial and helpful one is that we all live in sin and have a past. Knowing Francis’s youth, it is hard to disagree that he was not the model of proper behavior, meekness, obedience, shyness, and kindness. He was a rather proud young man who used to waste day by day, not presenting people anything good and was given to vanity. However, after changing his way of life, Francis was not afraid of admitting that he used to live in sin, and this teaches us that the present is more significant than the past. In my opinion, this claim needs to be heard and remembered by all people, and in this case, the Earth may become a better place.
This idea is especially of great importance in modern times because young and aged persons need to remember this to develop mutual trust and understanding. We all sin and make mistakes, but our task and purpose are to change ourselves and the world around us. Like Saint Francis, many people, regardless of their status in society, age, gender, and race may not be proud of their past deeds and thoughts. However, everyone is worthy of forgiveness and redemption, and this is the most essential and helpful claim of Francis that saves the lives of and gives hope to several persons.
To conclude, one may say that Francis is right. To change, sometimes people have to isolate themselves from their past, which does not let them become completely cleansed of sin and ready to step into the future role of God’s follower. Life events are elements that shape a person’s present and future, and God often communicates through these experiences. Our past is crucial, but it does not define who we are and what awaits us next.