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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 11, 2011

November 13 Homily Prep

-The homily from 11/6 is available by email
-The Scriptures for 11/13 are available at >
-I am preaching at the 9:30am and 12:30pm Masses on Sunday

Living the Light?!

The Word this week and the feast of St. Albert (that we celebrate this weekend) invite me to consider all the "increase" that we at St. Albert have produced with God's gift of salvation - Light. The story of the talents and the warnings of the coming "day of the Lord" go together to challenge me.

The "talent" or "resource" that the Master has entrusted to me is "salvation" in the Kingdom. The story plays out with a couple of challenging questions.
1. Have I multiplied the gift that I have received?
2. Is there more of God's Kingdom present because of what I have done with God's gift?
3. If not, isn't it possible that I never really received it?
4. Am I not worse off than before the original offer?

My conclusion (which I would like you to test in your life), is that many of us are believers in the Kingdom "in general"., in our hearts, in a way that is "personal". We believe we have received the knowledge and love of God - in general. But we are not "productive" of the Kingdom in particular, in the world, in the concrete lives that we live (in prayer, morality, loving, marriage, ministry) where the Lord wants to see the growth.

The gift was not given for our personal satisfaction, it was given for God's glory. But we are not productive.

Isn't it fair then to see and to say that I have not truly received the gift that I like to claim I have? Maybe we really DON'T believe in God as we claim on surveys. Isn't it possible to religiously claim to be a "child of the light" while at the same time refuse to surrender certain aspects of my life to the Kingdom and thus dwell in darkness?

If it is a fact that I am not being productive for the Kingdom in concrete and real, observable ways then maybe I have not really recieved the gift of salvation/kingdom at all. "take away from Him the little he has"! Ouch.

Being saved is way more than a satisfying feeling in your heart, right? As long as one has life and breath it's never too late to start being productive. It's about on-going, never-ending conversion, right?


anon 1 said...

“The gift was not given for our personal satisfaction, it was given for God's glory.”

“Isn't it possible to religiously claim to be a "child of the light" while at the same time refuse to surrender certain aspects of my life to the Kingdom and thus dwell in darkness?”

These particular lines from the Matador are powerful for me and certainly speak to my understanding and belief about what it means to be a “child of the light.” As I get older and search more and more for the meaning of life, it is these words of his that resonate with my understanding of our baptismal call. I am realizing that whatever gifts I have are really meant for the good of the Kingdom; that the purpose of my life – all of our lives – is meant for the greater good.

Sometimes what I perceive to be my “calling” is an activity or a pattern in life that I can describe as completely satisfying and enjoyable. But there are other times when I am pretty sure I am responding to God’s call, yet it’s difficult – and feels more like a test of endurance with perhaps pain, sadness, or loneliness involved. (Hmmm – that is sounding a bit like last week’s Matador reflection!) Nevertheless, I think that time of surrender – that dwelling in darkness – is part of the deal.

One author I like very much, Fr. Timothy Radcliffe, suggests that “Christ’s happiness is not a determined teeth-clenching jollity, but God’s joy which bears the sorrow of the world;” and that “if you wish to taste God’s joy, then one must not fear to be touched by sorrow, since it will deepen the hollow which God will fill with happiness.” That all has the sound of a journey of on-going, never-ending conversion.

Tom Sawyer said...

The recent readings and homilies all reinforce that we have been given many great gifts with our salvation and it is our investment of these talents that support the kingdom of God. A holy marriage, to my wife and Christ to His church,is dependent upon my taking action upon my commitment and promise to love and serve. It is not just my feelings but an action verb demanding my involvement. I know how I am honoring my marriage and how I am being true to the Word by what I am actually doing. Actions deepen each relationship and inaction withers that same relationship. We can pray, love God, say in our hearts we believe but without outwardly fulfilling God's purpose by actively supporting the kingdom we do not grow or worse fade into doubt.Our light certainly becomes stronger each time we use it and we can build the glow of Christ's light by enhancing His church with our actions. As we approach Advent it is a beautiful time to reflect on the gifts and light that we are returning to the King and how we can use the light that He has given us for His glory.