Wednesday of the 23rd Week
1 Corinthians 7:25-31
Psalm 45:11-12, 14-15, 16-17
Our Reward Will Be Great!
Today’s readings are startling. They challenge us to focus on how God is calling us at this moment. We cannot shrug at the important, life-giving commitments we have made. We have responsibilities to others – and to God. We need to fulfill the first and respond to the second. The two are not unrelated. Our consciousness of God’s presence in our lives will open us to God’s guidance in everything else.
We can’t wait until everything else is taken care of and then start looking for God. The time is now. The place is where we are. And the context is the community of faith in which we find ourselves. If we want a relationship with God we need to be part of a community of faith that feeds our spiritual needs, challenges our attitudes and behaviors, deepens our understanding of our faith through mutual interaction and communal worship, and which leads us to reach beyond ourselves to assist others who are in need.
This will entail talking a chance on saying and/or doing things that others may interpret as too conservative, or political, or radical, or antisocial, or self-aggrandizing. Or it may mean associating with people who are less accepted, generally pushed to the fringes, or otherwise not included in “polite society”, etc.
If we pay attention to the silent word of God that asserts itself through a well formed conscience - which includes the truly traditional stories and teachings the Old and New Testaments, and the valid teaching of our faith community – the community of the Church, the Body of Christ – we need not worry.
Whether we are wealthy or poor, applauded or rejected, if we have followed the way of Christ by living for others more than for ourselves our reward will be great in heaven.
Fr. John M. Lee, C.P., is Retreat Director of Bishop Molloy Retreat House, “The Passionist Spiritual Center in New York City”, www.bishopmolloy.org