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Serving Those in Need, Hardships

by | Apr 17, 2017 | Formation, Reflections, Society of St. Vincent de Paul


Serving those in need, Hardships. John 8: 51-59

Live – Learn – Fall and Arise

Amazed and Afraid

Vincentian Day of Prayer and Fast

Serving those in need, Hardships. John 8:51-59

Vincentians, today Jesus refers to Himself as “I AM.” The name God revealed to Moses. So, let us reflect! Let us reflect on this in Christ, all of life has meaning now. We have the opportunity to participate in the redemption of the world by offering up our suffering in union with Christ, and there is a treasure trove of meaning for us to uncover! So, let’s reflect on this episode from Genesis. While tending sheep in the hillside, Moses sees a strange sight. There an angel of the Lord appears to him in fire, flaming out of a bush. God sees him and calls him by name: “Moses, Moses, I AM the God of your fathers, the God of Abraham, the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.” This is a very familiar God, one who knows Moses’ ancestors. “This is what you shall tell the Israelites: I AM sent me to you.” The sheer act of being itself cannot be avoided, and it cannot be controlled. It can only be surrendered to in faith. How shocking and strange Jesus’ listeners must have found it when Jesus took this name for himself. If the Israelites ask me, ‘what is His name?’ what am I to tell them?” “God replied, I am who I am” What does that mean?  God is saying, in essence, “I cannot be defined, described, or delimited. I am not a being, but rather the sheer act of to-be itself.” We will fall and rise.  We will make mistakes.  We will live and learn.  We are human and not perfect.

Live – Learn – Fall and Arise

You fall, you rise, you make mistakes, you live, you learn.” You’re human, not perfect you’ve been hurt, but you’re alive. Think of what a precious privilege it is to be alive to breathe, to think, to enjoy, and to be with people you love. Sometimes there is sadness in our journey but there is also lots of beauty and joy. We must keep putting one foot in front of the other even when we hurt, for we will never know what is waiting for us just around the bend. In our time the work may not always be easy.  We will get tired. It is hard to put others needs ahead of our own.  It is hard to volunteer to work at the Vincentian Food Larder.  It is a time to be overwhelmed.  Each week there is something new.  Time after time we teach English to Refugees.  It seems like a painful time of service.  We are called as disciples and we say yes to God. The cost of discipleship is obedience to God and imbedded in that cost is the gift of freedom and Joy.  We know the cost of work is service to others, long hours, tired bodies and weary minds.  It is all for the glory of God.  The good news is that God holds us all close throughout all or life’s journey.  We are indeed beloved and blessed.

Amazed and Afraid

Lord Jesus, your grace and mercy abounds even in the midst of trials and difficulties.  Help me seek your kingdom first and to reject whatever would hinder me from pursuing your way of righteousness and holiness.  Regarding Jesus, He says I AM.  He is who He says He is or a mad man.  What is left out is the middle ground.  He says “Either you are with me or against me!”  It is not watered down; Amazed and afraid.  Jesus both God and Human.  It begins like a hex, coming together as God is human!  He did not appear in wealth, but in poverty.  Jesus emptied Himself and became a slave.  He did this out of love and the joke is on us. Jesus grew in obscurity.  We know almost nothing about the first 30 years.  We assume He was most likely trained as a carpenter, by Joseph His stepfather. He did not belong to orders or hierarchy in the Church.  In simple terms, He was a layman.  He spoke and preached very boldly and performed many miracles. He attracted large crowds from all over. You cannot become complacent about Jesus.  He is moral and gentle and is not an echo of others today in holiness.  We are an echo of Him.  We see Him in all those we serve.  We are called by Him to be disciples.  He is the ultimate and the Holy Savior.



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