Vincentians Seeing Life – Vincentians, Best Friends

by | Dec 12, 2016 | Formation, Reflections, Society of St. Vincent de Paul

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Vincentians Seeing Life – Vincentians, Best FriendsGod Deserves our Best Facing Giants

Vincentian Day of Prayer and Fast

Vincentians Seeing Life

We try to see life and the people in it from God’s view. Generally we don’t see things as they are.  Seeing things from God’s eyes begin to open our eyes.  Poverty is not God’s fault! Poverty is our fault and our responsibility.  We cannot walk away from the poor after giving them a hamper of food.  We need to look into their eyes and see Jesus and begin asking, “What else can I do?”  When we serve with charity we must also bring justice. It is up to us to see the needs of those we serve.  We have to be generous with our time, talent and treasure to end poverty.  We need to take the time to help them with forms and resumes getting help from government sources, other charities who specialize in job search, teaching English as a second language and networking with others for job search.  This is justice!  Remember no work of Charity can fail without justice.  We must see those we serve through God’s eyes and pray for wisdom. We need to give food first, but we cannot stop there.  Pray and listen to what God wants from us for each person we serve.

Vincentians, Best Friends

We together are best friends with God and those we serve.  We cannot look at them with disgust.  Our main goal is to lift them from poverty and give them a reason to hold their head up. We cannot ever judge.  We may see a beer can on the counter, but we may see one on yours, too.  I’m not saying we ignore.  I’m saying we do not judge.  When things are tough and people are at the bottom of the stairway to climb from their poverty, give them a hand up.  Charity and justice can never be alone.  God has called us to serve.  He will not abandon us.  Sometimes people around us say we are wasting our time.  I shudder and usually ask them to come with me.  They call the homeless bums and drunkards.  I ask, “How can we make a difference?’  When I hear the response, “Get rid of them.” I shudder and pray.  Our work is with God and so we keep our temper and pray for those who do not see or think Justice.

God Deserves our Best

He trusted us enough and called us to be like His son Jesus.  We are chosen to be Vincentians and to see Christ in the poor, in each member of our Vincentian Family.  We see Him in the homeless, the prisoner, the addicted and all who call on us for help. “Let your roots grow down into Christ and draw up nourishment from Him.  See that you go on growing in the Lord and become strong and vigorous in truth.”  (Colossians) 2:7. What can we do?  We can pray for help and find the help we need. Each situation is different.  We are Vincentians and we know you cannot give Charity without Justice.  Sometimes we are tired and worn out.  The solution is to pray.  We can’t always think of ourselves, but we have to be aware and know when to rest.  So prayer is always the answer.  If we are to be like Jesus and who are chosen, we must be the best we can be.  We concentrate what is the best we can give to our friends in poverty and then we look up and see we need to seek justice to help charity.  God deserves the best of us.

Facing Giants

Sometimes in our service we see giants that become roadblocks.  Do not listen.  Pray and ask Our Lord for direction. We are called to feed the sheep and tend to the lambs.  The feeding is Charity and the tending is Justice.  I know it seems simple, but if we pray and read Scripture we will start to get the message. We must face our giants, but we never have to face them alone.  God is bigger than any giant we run into. We need to focus on God instead of our giants to save us from stumbling when you see your giant or Goliath be prepared to face them.  God is with us and he has defeated Goliath before.  When you feel you cannot survive the giant, then look up and know where your help and salvation is.  Who do you trust? With few exceptions everybody likes to be liked and right.  We need to put into play our Social Justice.  We can feed those we serve, but it is for a short time.  Embrace Justice and we can give them the freedom of their poverty.  I base this on a couple of incidents:  One a refugee family of seven desperately needing help after a lay off from work.  They were at risk of losing everything they had and slowly they were.  We gave ourselves a pep talk after facing their giants, we faced ours, was there nothing we could do?  We helped each one of the seven differently.  We did job search and government help.  We gave them hope.  It was a day by day situation.  They needed the time and tools.  Not only did we give it to them we supported their journey and taught them how to survive.  Yes about 20 of us did this for Charity but Justice came in and there was success.  We still visit because we are friends and occasionally we have to help, but they really want to help themselves.  Thanks be to God.

Blessings, Lynn

 

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