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Get into the ring! How this works...

This is easy! Each week on Thursday I post my homily main focus for preaching this coming Sunday. What I am hoping for is a reaction from people in the pews. Does my "focus" connect with your daily life, faith, and experience? Or not? Either affirm the direction I am going in (by giving me an example from your life) or challenge me, ask for clarification! Questions are the best! Reaction rather than reflection is what I'm looking for here. Don't be afraid, get in the ring. Ole!

Friday, November 4, 2011

Nov. 6 Homily Prep

-Last week's homily is available by email
-This Sunday's Scriptures are at>
-I am preaching at 5:30 and 8:00am Masses

Wait for the Lord!

We often speak at this time of the liturgical year about our waiting for the Lord. I am thinking that the Scripture texts this week invite us to not only wait but to check the quality of the waiting. What I mean is that I think many Catholics are legitimately "waiting" for the Lord, but not desiring His life. Many have made an act of faith and sincerely believe in Jesus' resurrection and they are waiting for the Lord's return. But they are not desiring His Kingdom, his Life. What's the difference?

I believe the relationship that we have with God is deeply affected by what we desire and it is revealed by the quality of our waiting. If one believes in the love, mercy, and compassion of the's waiting for Him will have a certain characteristic. In contrast, if one believes in the judgment and retribution of the Lord....that's a different demeanor in waiting. If one truly longs for and desires communion with God, one waits differently, believes differently, lives differently!

How are you waiting for the Lord? There are different types of waiting:
We can be waiting for a report from the medical test? That is dread, not desire.  
We can be waiting for a surgery to be completed.  That is anxiety, not desire.  
We can be waiting for the dentist to stop drilling on our tooth. That is endurance, not desire.
We can be waiting for the line to move at the grocery store.  That is impatience, not desire.
We can be wishing that our son or daughter would call or visit.  That is loneliness, not desire
We can be keeping vigil at the hospice waiting for our loved one to die.  That is agony not desire.

What is the quality of our faith? Does it have something to do with what we are waiting for? Do we truly desire the one we claim to be waiting for?




JoyFuralle said...

Wow, I’m amazed how I read the readings and I think about so many things and then you select a theme/topic that resounds within, wow! Love the content, LOVE the examples you gave.

It would also be helpful to work backwards. Desire is an incredibly powerful thing, and I think people don’t recognize what desire IS. You’ve described very well what desire is not, I can relate with every example. Now consider what desire looks like, feels like, so we can relate from the we can relate…so we can recognize the finger of God at work. This is the best of stuff people don’t talk about with one another and express. People think those experiences of desire have to come from some kind of “religious living” aka your “religious blindness”, pharisaicalism. Not so. Our Lord is at it all the time.

For me, what is desire in waiting? It’s looking at a sweet, innocent baby and wondering why you feel like you’re melting. It’s looking at a sunrise or sunset, the vastness of the sky and color and feeling something beyond words and it stirs something within that is inexplicable. It’s standing at a loved one’s casket with such sorrow & emptiness I feel consumed. It is also an experience when I am with friends, enjoying their company so thoroughly that I don’t want the evening to end. What else is desire? It’s being in a situation where there is nothing, absolutely NOTHING I can do, it is such helplessness that in that total helplessness is a starkness that moves me. It’s hearing a phrase, maybe words to a song, maybe a cliché, that all of a sudden moves me within. This one is rare… being home on a weekend with children and everyone gets along. The longing within for that all the time is desire! Nothing I could orchestrate or make happen! It’s looking at something or being in a situation and realizing what I see and feel is so beyond words and comprehension… and allowing myself to experience it. It is all these things that point to the desire within, the desire for beauty, for truth, for goodness, for wholeness, for union and unity, for who we’re created to be in Christ.

Staying awake means allowing myself to see and experience the ache of desire, the very ache of our Lord, and to allow that ache to be lived, expressed in acts of love and giving.

Anonymous said...

Yes Matador, beautiful prep, one that at this moment is very helpful to me.
My relationship with God is deeply affected by my desires and patience
waiting for my own expectations to be accomplished.
My relationship with God is always evolving but with pain ever present.
At this moment after going through some tantrums with anxiety, impatience, loneliness, dread and all of the things that you mention,
I realized that what I wanted to resolve it was imposible for me to do,finally God was getting my attention....
I received an e-mail with the following...

Let it be, let it be,
There will be an answer,
Let it be.
( McCartney and Lennon)

I prayed over it, had no choice but to give my problem to God to fix with the great DESIRE to be close to Jesus and forget about my expectations. I can tolerate peace better!

I received the book "The way of the Disciple" (Erasmo Levi-Merikakis), Please let me know how
to give it to you.

anon 1 said...

All of these reflections are very beautiful: Matador, JoyFuralle, and Gitana! As I read the Matador’s reflection, Psalm 63 immediately came to my mind – and then I read the Scriptures for Sunday and saw it was there! For me, that psalm captures the desire for the Divine. All of the other descriptors the Matador used are experiences real enough – but not, as he indicated, any kind of substitute for the fulfillment for which our souls long.

Anonymous said...

Gitana, Thank you, however, I did order the book from the library as Jim suggested.

Hello Joyfuralle, what do you mean by work backwards... backwards?

It has been my understanding that desire is: willing the good of the other.