God Blesses us Always – Take a Break – Enter the Kingdom – What Do You Need?
Vincentian Day of Prayer and Fast – Tuesday, July 21, 2015
Dear Vincentian Brothers and Sisters: What joy you bring to me. I love reading about the great work you do for the Vincentian Family on Famvin. I love learning about the awards you receive and your special meetings. We are truly blessed by your presence. I know you are praying for the Vincentian Family all clergy, deacons, bishops and our dear Pope Francis. Remember to pray for our youth, especially our seminarians and those contemplating religious life. Bless your week.
God Blesses us Always – God has blessed you, pass it on. Receiving gifts from others is how God touches us with His love. And freely passing on to others what He’s given to us is how He touches others. We give back and give thanks when we help others, especially those He places before us. God has His own exchange policy. He gives everything freely. This is not the norm, but it is God’s way. He gives to us without cost and His expectation is for us to give freely as well. The system works. God gives us mercy, kindness, so many blessings and our gifts which we share with others, whether we think they deserve it or not. We do not always deserve what God gives. Think of all your blessings, what you have and your many gifts. Pray in thanksgiving for all He has given. When we distribute His blessings to others, He is very happy. Don’t ever leave a gift from God hiding in storage behind our selfishness. This does not make God happy. God distributes His gifts through the community. Receiving gifts from others is how He touches us with His love. And freely passing on to others what He’s given to us is how He touches others. And thus God becomes more fully present in the world.
Take a Break – Life depends on rest and detachment from our business, even our SSVP work. Jesus took the disciples away to rest, to be fed and nourished after their work spreading the Gospel. Keeping the Sabbath, Jesus bears powerful witness to how much our lives depend on the balance between rest and work. During our rest, we can pray and discern on those before us as we plan for the best way to lift them from their poverty. However, when duty calls us we must move to do the work we are called to do. When God calls, rest time is over. We have to make plans for adequate times of rest to pray and plan. We need the rest so we can serve lovingly with joy. Make an effort this week to find new life and direction in your rest. Let some things go to rest for yourself and others; to show your love in family and to those in need. Think of things to make a difference in your life and your treatment of others. Take a break and let God happen in your life.
Enter the Kingdom – At the end of time, the King will say to those who were compassionate toward the hungry and thirsty, the naked and the strangers: “Come, O blessed of my Father, enter the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world, even if you have never known me, because whatever you have done to the least of my brothers, you have done to me.” (Gospel of John) Jesus comes through something tiny, a little piece of bread, consecrated by the priest, which becomes His Body. This is the plan of Jesus. He will leave us physically, but through the bread He will be really present with us. The sacrament becomes a real presence for each one of us; it is not just a moment of grace but a sign of a covenant of love, a friendship offered to us. Jesus has chosen us to live His mission. He wants our hearts to be wellsprings of living water, loving people and helping them achieve their goals. Thus, when we announce the Good News to the poor, it is not to tell them, “Jesus loves you,” but rather to say, “I love you. I commit myself to you in the name of Jesus.” You announce by your loving presence and journey with them. Do all of this in the name of Jesus.
What Do You Need? – God provides what we need when we need it. God will always provide exactly what you need when you need it, even though it doesn’t always seem sufficient or the right thing, trust in Him always. In Vincentian work, we have the experience, however sometimes we begin to think this visit is the same as last one and we forget each person is different even though their needs may be similar. We need our Lord with us. He knows all and we need to tap in on it. We must treat every visit as a new gift from God. Each visit deserves the best we have. See Jesus always in the face of those in need. I say this often, because sometimes it is difficult for us to see Jesus in the broken. We see their bad decisions, their addictions and their incarceration again and again. How can this be Jesus? We must journey with them and never give up. We need to see Jesus and be Jesus. What would Jesus do? With prayer, we will know. Sometimes it is the journey, not the goods we give. Our journey always includes prayer, before the visit and after. Don’t forget the friendly after visit call. This is important. Just a call to say how are you doing? This gives another opportunity to pray and know God is always there, just ask for what you need; He will provide.
Live the word and be the joy of the Gospel to your family and to those we serve. Blessings, Lynn