Sunday, October 29, 2006

Parable of the Talents

Reflect on this as a means to prepare to offer appropriate thanks to God on Thanksgiving Day!

Parable of the Talents
The Parable of the Talents is a parable of Jesus in the Gospel of Matthew Matthew 25:14-30
The parable is apparently the origin of the use of the word "talent" to use a skill or ability, from the common interpretation of the story to teach that we are under a moral obligation to use our abilities rather than bury them.
1. The real point of the Bible Study is to recognize that we are renters and not owners of anything we have. God gave us gifts to use for HIS purpose. Based on that reflect on the the loss of each of the following:
+ Your reputation is not your own. Imagine it’s loss.
+ Your parents and/or kids are not your own.
+ Your mental health
+ Your physical health
+ Your friends
+ Scripture
+ Eucharist
+ Your financial security
+ What if God decided not to offer Reconciliation and mercy
+ What if God’s love was conditional
What do you think God wants back from you out of all the talents and gifts He gave you?
2. God was not required to give us anything at all be He gave us all of the above listed items simply out of His generosity. How do you plan to show God your gratitude in the future?

Friday, October 20, 2006

God's Garden

St. Therese of Lisieux said that in God’s garden everyone can’t be a rose. That would simply be boring. For God to be truly delighted with His creations variety is needed. Some are beautiful roses while others are pure lilies. Yet some are like fragrant violets while others have the simplicity of the daisy.

Daisies can’t wish themselves into roses. First, that’s impossible to do and second, the wasted effort would eventually wear down and destroy the daisy.

The Little Flower also said that perfection doesn’t come in doing God’s will but in being God’s will.

So, if I am only a tiny buttercup or a mum that is what I must joyfully be to the best of my ability. Sure I can see the beauty of the regal rose but all the wishing in the world will not make me that. For my own salvation and humility God allowed me to be the lowly buttercup. Neither must I become a weed in God’s garden, giving bad example and destroying others in my path with my negativity. Dandelions trick the eye into thinking it has seen a flower when in truth it too is a weed. I cannot deceive others into believing I am (or the truth is) different from what I am. To give God true joy ~ and I’ve just defined that as my life’s purpose~ I must be the buttercup that reflects it’s beauty back to the Creator.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Why Me

Trace Balin is a Christian singer and she wrote and sang a song in 1989 called “Why Me.” I was reflecting on that song and wondered why the Lord would indeed choose to watch over, bless and save me. I’ve done nothing to deserve that. I’m average and the Book of Revelations says, “ I wish you were either hot or cold but you are not. You are lukewarm and therefore I vomit you from my mouth.” I’ve prayed a lot of words about my desire to do better and to please God. I’ve talked, written and sung about it. But the truth is I’ve lived an adequate life only. I’m not the saint I wanted to be. I haven’t saved hundreds of souls. I can’t even keep 10 Commandments. I’ve begged for forgiveness and promised the Lord I’ll try harder – which I do temporarily. But over time He can’t count on my. I’ll return to average. My life is about me and my schedule and my needs rather than living a life of reflective gratitude. And I do that over and over again. So the question remains. Why me?
I’m old enough now to know that the answer has nothing to do with me. It’s all about you, Jesus. 1Cor 13 says God is Love. You can’t be resentful or angry with me. I know you are a just God and you expect back the fruits of the seeds you’ve sown in me and everyone else. I know I’m only a tenant on this earth. You are the Owner and Creator of it all.
But I know b/c of the way your eyes beheld the widow who gave her last dime that you are Love. I know b/c you cried when your friend Lazarus died. I know b/c you lived with and helped your Mother Mary for 30 years before your public ministry. I also know you are kind and merciful b/c of my own life experiences. When I was very sick you provided the right doctors. When I lost my job You provided the contacts to get me a new one. When I attend Mass you more than generously share Your Body and Blood to feed me.
So I don’t need to focus on the question Why Me. I only need to focus on and praise you for the answer~ God Is Love.