Today, we find the Church in a new turmoil. Increasing secularism, abuse scandals, and a lack of true fidelity place us once again in a time that is not easy. We create our burdens by not using our gifts wisely and by turning inward selfishly.
Life is perhaps God’s greatest gift to each of us. Without life, we would be unable to experience all the wonder of this world, the love of family and friends, and the joy that comes from using our talents and skills. Life itself is more profound a gift than we can even truly contemplate.
If we are accountable to no one, then the community is simply an option on a Sunday morning, much like golf or household chores. If we are not accountable to God, then our faith is simply something we look to periodically when we are sad or frightened.
When working toward a life of greater generosity and surrender of all to God, we are prone to fall flat on our face many times. We are not called to this life only when we are strong. It is how we respond when times are the most difficult that truly defines us.
When disciples of Jesus Christ act in a gracious manner to all those they meet, they provide a glimpse of home. This home is not in a house in a particular location, but it is a home prepared for all of us for eternity. There is no hate, only love.
There is one joy that remains throughout: the joy we find in Jesus. What he gives us does not fade. The amazing thing about what he offers us is that it also provides a lens through which we see all things. Now we can see the smallest reasons to be grateful.
Do you think God desires a portion of you? Without a doubt, He wants all of you: the good, the bad, and the ugly. Walking with Him daily is so important, and we can never become the disciples and stewards we need to be without a deepening relationship.
What is it that tempts you the most? When you really start reflecting, you find that there are many temptations all around. Even if you are strong and never succumb to a certain temptation, it is still there waiting for a weak moment in your life.
So often in life, people are concerned about the minimum requirements. What is the minimum I must do to get a certain grade? What is the minimum I need to do to receive the Sacrament of Confirmation? What exactly do I have to do to make my boss happy?
You may not be an entrepreneur with your own business, but you do have your parish. This is your community and how you act in the world around you will either add to a buzz or a lack of interest. Can your light shine brightly to be seen from miles around?
Stewardship living is difficult unless we are experiencing that way of life for ourselves. You can to church every Sunday, but unless you are actively growing in faith and trying to live a life of generous stewardship, you cannot see the power of such a lifestyle.