Love is the key to all that brings us true joy, true happiness in life. We were created in love. Love also brings us pain. The love Jesus teaches us does not promise there will be no pain. However, it is the greatest love, for love, by a God who is love. Loving our neighbor as yourself is the command. All love comes from God and is directed toward God. So when we love and serve those in poverty, we love and serve God. It is that simple. And we forgive. The desire to give and receive love is one of the most authentic and natural desires; for where there is true love, there is God. Yes it is true, we may not receive that love back and yes we may get hurt, but think for a moment. Does Jesus ever hurt? Does God hurt? Is there ever any pain in the life of our Lord, or is it just us? Turn on your love when you go to serve the prisoner, the angry person who has no money for rent or is suffering addiction or anyone living in poverty look at the hurting Jesus. Learn something today from those you serve.
I attended Vincentian Family Building Bridges out of Poverty. These four days of building bridges not over poverty but out of poverty were very profound for me. I immediately started writing workshops for change. We cannot keep handing out bandages when some people need a heart transplant. We will all be looking at Systemic Change. This is the first VinFam event I had ever attended and now I know that I have truly missed out on a lot. I really felt like I was on Holy ground. I have added so many people to my daily prayers from the sisters of Charity, daughters of Charity Ladies of Charity and Priests and Hospitals, young adult’s missionaries, and everyone else. I met someone from the Horn of Africa (how humbling for me) I met the President of the US SSVP, Sheila Gilbert (we had her in our prayers when she was elected) and some of her executive. I met a priest, who was in New Orleans during Katrina, Margaret Rose whom I truly love from SSVP Caribbean and lives in Tobago, and Ed Keane who I am beginning to think does everything, but his job is the North West Spanish Countries and I probably have that wrong, but pray for these people anyway. Pray that God continues to give them the strength to do 10 times the work the rest of us do. Oh I forgot one special person Father John Freund who they say never sleeps who is the International Coordinator for famvin.org. Always keep the Vincentian Family in your prayers and could you add just two more names, Jodi Pfarr and Pil de Vol two of the main presenters. Jodi taught me how to use Target stores as a model. Remember if your prayer load is heavy place them all in your hand lift them to our Lord.
When we use God’s love, it is through our works that Faith is shared. Each time we make a small medium or large decision in faith and with prayer God is with us. Ash these questions to start your day. Lord, what do you expect of me today? What are your plans for me? Saint Vincent de Paul be with me today. St. Louise be with me today. Frederic be with me today, Blessed Rosalie be with me today. Lord Help me bring all of the Vincentian Family in my service today. Lord make my day a blessed day filled with love, peace and joy. Make every one of my actions be your will. I ask you Lord to plan my day. Whatever challenges you place before me I trust Jesus will be by my side and that I will love each person and situation through Him. Help me Holy Spirit and be my Guide. Amen.