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Get into the ring! How this works...

This is easy! Each week on Thursday I post my homily idea...my 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, April 22, 2016

April 24th Homily Prep

Last Sunday's homily is available by email
-This Sunday's Scriptures can be found at www.usccb.org
-check out this weeks LinC letter at www.parishlincletter.blogspot.com
-I will be celebrating mass at 5:30 PM and 11:00 AM on Sunday

What has God Done with You lately?

There are many reality TV programs on nowadays.  Many of them are competitions between contestants that are chefs, or furniture designers, or business entrepeneurs.  In all of these the contestants are presented with some "stuff" (either food, wood, metal, money) and they are challenged to "turn it into something" desireable.

In the first reading from this Sunday's Mass, the Acts of the Apostles says that Paul and Barnabas "called the church together and reported what God had done with them."  I couldn't help but notice this use of a phrase.  Paul and Barnabas are clearly being presented in the story as "instruments in the hand of God."  The verse prior to this "done with them" comment the bible says "in Antioch... where they had been commended to the grace of God for the work they had now accomplished."  So, in the hand of God, operating under the grace of God a great deal can be "done with us".

I often speak to engaged couples is this way in order to express what the purpose of the sacrament of matrimony is all about.  I remind them that God has called them "for" each other so that through the joys and vicissitudes of married life, they might be turned into a greater image of Christ.  The spouses are instruments of God's grace for each other.  The number one job of a spouse is to get their spouse to the holiness of heaven.

Often at a funeral mass I will be impressed with what God "has done with one simple life".  When we live life or view life through the lens of this "instrumentality" we can see very clear expamples of God's power and grace working through simple human living.  The practice of "daily examen" might be recommended for all of us.  At the end of the day we take a moment to have our eyes opened to where and how God has used our daily journey for the building up of the Kingdom.  We, like Paul and Barnabas can be impressed with what "God has done with us."

Do you think most people see themselves as instruments in the hand of God?  Or do we too often think of our time and talent, our relationships and accomplishments as our tools for self-fulfillment, success, etc?

4 comments:

Do Bee said...

This is a great message and inspiring for all Christian disciples! I agree and wonder how many Christians do in fact see themselves as instruments in the hand of God. I believe that a telling difference of those who do and those who don't is a joy that the "do's" carry. Just as Paul and Barnabas recognized that it was necessary to undergo many hardships to enter the kingdom, we get the sense in the reading of it that they were not put-off by that. Compare that to those who see their time, talent, relationships and accomplishments as tools for their own success - and those are folks whose frustration can run deep. It's hard to be joyful about undergoing hardships when you're wrapped up in self-accomplishment - because the cross doesn't make sense there! This message that you are preparing to preach is a great Christian challenge for us.

Tom Sawyer said...

What a beautiful way to evaluate the opportunities that God has privileged us to have. In our reflections this simple phrase will become part of my submission to God's plan. What have I allowed Him to do with me. There are so many opportunities to involved in the Lord's plan for the building of His church that it does take us allowing Him to flow through and work us to accomplish His purpose. The deep fulfillment and closeness with Christ intensifies as we allow Him to use us. We need to be sensitive to each moment and what we can do or learn from each. Momentness or the practice of living in the moment as God works through us.

Peg said...

Many times throughout my kids growing up I have been to a band, orchestra or choir concert. There is always lots of praise for the students or the director, but if it weren't for the kids participating the director would not receive praise and likewise if it wasn't for the director nurturing kids to participate the kids would not excel. All are necessary to the end result. All depend on the other to work together for the greater good.

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