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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, December 7, 2012

Ears versus mouths

-Last Sunday's homily is available by email
-This Sunday's Scriptures can be found at
-I will be celebrating mass this weekend at 5:30 and 8:00am

Brand New Ears!

My father was famous for saying to me that "when I died my ears would be brand new and my mouth was going to be worn out". I've heard another version that says "the reason God gave us two ears and one mouth is that we would listen twice as much as we talk".

I am struck by the prophetic vocation of John the Baptist. It begins "in the desert" and the Scripture says the "Word came to John". I don't believe that I have ever noticed this pattern in one who is called to be a prophet. One must receive the word of God before he or she can pronounce the Word of God.

I have always thought of prophetic activity as words or actions that are saying something. I have always understood the prophetic function of the church as the teaching and preaching function. What I am realizing with John the Baptist and of course Jesus himself (both modeled on Moses) is that the essence of being a prophet is "listening".

Therefore, before I accept the role of prophet of the Lord I must consider my qualifications: have I listened.

In fact, the whole Church through baptism is called to a prophetic life in Christ. Have we nurtured this essential prophetic qualification? Have we heard? Have we listened?

I am embarrassed to say that I am shocked by this insight but I can't resist being honest. How about you?


anon 1 said...

I like this insight very much, and I agree that when I think of a prophet that I focus on the speaking. How suitable it is today to be reflecting on this necessity of first “listening” – first “discerning” – the message of God before speaking and acting – after all, it is a feast day of Mary's - the Immaculate Conception! I don’t intend that as a digression, but rather as another example of when we’ve seen the proper order of things played out.

There is a rhythm to be aware of here. This is yet another reminder in Scripture and in this life of John the Baptist to see that our actions are to be a response to God’s Word and God’s invitation. Yet as the Matador notes, we so often get ahead of ourselves and are quick to act and speak. We forget to wait. What a great way to again consider this Advent time – it’s a time to wait – anticipate. It’s not a passive approach, but an intentional and receptive approach to our relationship with God. I will make it my aim to wait – listen – hear what the word of God is saying to me in my life and as a member of His Body.

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