Let it Go – Journey of Love – Christ invites us to Serve – God’s Gift to Us
Vincentian Day of Prayer and Fast – Tuesday, May 3, 2016
Let it Go – Often in our teenager years we strain the relationship. We tend to hold onto the bad memories and hurts more than the love. We remember those moments of anger, hurt and pain at our parents, our siblings and friends. We thought our parents were mean, because of their rules. Sometimes we blur out the love we have shared in our earlier years as family. It is important to return to the love that we share in the family. In reading from Sirach, this wise teacher is imparting some 200 years before Christ; he is imparting the wisdom of how to treat our elders, most especially our mothers and fathers. Our dialogue and interaction with the Church is designed to help us hear the voice of God in our lives, live the life God invites us to live, and become the-best-version-of-ourselves. Let us never forget that people do not exist for the Church – the Church exists for people. As Vincentians visiting and tending the sheep in Jesus’ name we must clear our own hearts, so we may bring pure love to those in need. We can remember our hurts only if it helps us heal theirs. We have to let it go and be present to listen to those in need, so they may also come to the time when they can let it go. Remember, most times their hurts are greater than ours. Let things go that are hurtful in your heart so you will have the will and the power to give to others the love and understanding they need to let it go. We are not alone we have God in three persons with us; Father, Son and Holy Spirt. Go forth to serve with love, hope and joy.
Journey of Love – It is by means of this journey of awareness of self-with-God and the God-in-others that we can better learn to love, be loved and more completely realize our desire to be with God in all the places where our lives take us in all situations. We know we are called and this calling is real and important in our lives. We are called to follow Jesus! He says, “Come” and we say, “I will follow you.” When I say, ‘I am a Christian,’ I don’t speak of this with pride. I’m confessing that I stumble and need Christ to be my guide. When I say, ‘I am a Christian,’ I’m not trying to be strong. I’m professing that I’m weak and need His strength to carry on. When I say, ‘I am a Christian,’ I’m not bragging of success. I’m admitting I have failed and need GOD to clean my mess. When I say, ‘I am a Christian,’ I’m not claiming to be perfect. My flaws are far too visible, but GOD believes I am worth it. When I say, “I am a Christian,” I still feel the sting of pain. I have my share of heartaches, so I call upon HIS name. When I say, ‘I am a Christian,’ I’m not holier than thou, I’m just a simple sinner who received GOD’s good grace and He called me to follow Him and I do because I am also called to be a Saint even though I am a sinner. We are called as Vincentians to be Saints serving Christ in the poor. We know we are sinners and therefore need Him always. We serve and continue our Christian journey because of His Grace and it is truly a journey of love.
Christ invites us to Serve – Our call to follow Christ among the poor means we are missionaries. Many of us are not going to faraway places but have a mission to serve all people in need. In this case being a missionary is leaving our comfort zone to help others in our neighborhood. It is to give hope when we visit the prisoners and their families. We try to change the world by trying to make it perfect, in peace and love. We are present to families who suffer from poverty and we try to make a difference. A danger on this mission is to impose our life on another, saying, “My way is the only way, my religious expression is the only valid one. This is not what Christ invites us to. When we go to them, God is with us always and we listen to Him. We think we know what the poor need and do what we think. We are called as Vincentians to bring the Vincentian Virtues of love and service. Number one on the list is humility. Humility to listen and to accompany those in need without ordering; the simplicity to understand our true responsibilities in this mission; the mortification to sacrifice something of myself for the good of those who need us; the gentleness to resolve cultural clashes; charity and evangelical zeal expressed in a desire to lift them from their poverty, illness and distress. We need the heart of charity and evangelical zeal in a desire to enter this world which is to know and to live the Gospel and use it to serve those we are called to serve. He calls us, we respond. We pray always and know prayer is not something we do for God. It is something God does for us and those we serve. Answer Christ’s invitation to Serve, He will be with us always.
God’s Gift to Us – Let me seek you in my desire; let me desire you in my seeking. Let me find you by loving you; let me love you when I find you. – Anselm of Canterbury. God alone knows exactly how our present actions will affect our futures, so it is useless to worry about it. Many of us don’t realize that the call to intimacy with God is possible, or that we are good enough or holy enough for God to love us in this personal way. Yet the Scriptures remind us over and over again that God’s love is not earned: it is a gift. God Is Always with us and showers us with gifts. They are all free. God is with us in the struggles and difficulties of life to help us choose life, to choose God, even when we don’t feel God with us. By tradition going back to early Christian times, [the prayer of] The Divine Office is devised so that the whole course of the day and night is made holy by the praises of God. –from the Constitution on the Sacred Liturgy, para. 84- We repay God by answering His call to serve. He will always be with us, another gift. Today we celebrated the funeral Mass of our dear brother-in-law and god child. He will be sadly missed but is looking down from heaven, free of pain in the arms of our Lord. This is another great gift from God. He has prepared a place for us and He welcomes us home to eternal life. Good bye good and faithful servant. We miss you. Death is also a gift. Christ died on the cross for us which was the greatest gift of all. Live your life well and accept all the gifts and be sure you live and serve in a perfect way to thank God for the gifts. You as Vincentian have shared many of these gifts with those in need. He always loves you and is always with you. Celebrate God’s gifts.