Saturday, October 12, 2013


By Rev. Joe McCloskey, SJ

Naaman went down and plunged into the Jordan seven times at the word of Elisha, the man of God.  His flesh became again like the flesh of a little child, and he was clean of his leprosy.  Naaman returned with his whole retinue to the man of God.  On his arrival he stood before Elisha and said, "Now I know that there is no God in all the earth, except in Israel.  2 Kings 5:14-15

If we have died with him we shall also live with him; if we persevere we shall also reign with him.  But if we deny him he will deny us.  If we are unfaithful he remains faithful, for he cannot deny himself.  2 Timothy 2:11b-13

And one of them, realizing he had been healed, returned, glorifying God in a loud voice; and he fell at the feet of Jesus and thanked him.  He was a Samaritan.  Jesus said in reply, "Ten were cleansed, were they not?  Where are the other nine?  Luke 17:15-17

Piety has one of its best expressions in the gratitude of our hearts for life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. We know how to say real thanks when it comes from our heart. How we appreciate the wonders of the Lord’s creation is seen in all the joy of our heart when we look at life around us. So we and enter into the mystery of God’s love. God is love.  God is always faithful to himself and his love is everlasting. It forever surrounds and is the ordinary of creation around us. The only problem for us is that God has made us free to accept his love. He does not force it on us. He does not make it obvious. It is not overpowering. We are free to accept it. It is so fully there that we can say his love is the ordinary of the ordinariness of life. He heals us again and again without our noticing how well he is taking care of us. Our lives are perfect reflections of God’s love.

The world with all its wonders is the love of God at its best. It takes   our looking below the surface to appreciate how much God is doing for us. I climb the cross of Christ to look at the world through his eyes. There is nothing he would not do for us even if we do not ask. When we ask he always says “yes.” Sometimes he sends us something better than what we were asking for. Thus we miss seeing his love. It is not what we thought we were asking for. Other times he gives us a wait because it is not yet a good time for what we are asking.  At other times he gives us what we were asking for and it so quickly there, we do not appreciate that it is there for our having asked. If we study our world, we will see how well God is taking care of us and how alike we are to the nine lepers who did not come back to say thanks.


We must die with Christ so that we can live with him. He invites us take up our cross and to follow him. He is not asking us to carry anything that is too heavy when we carry our crosses in his name. He does most of the work because he it is to whom we are yoked. The invitation to Action is seen in what our hearts let us do in the name of the thanks that our lives should be. The prayer of the Christian should be the prayer of Thanks.  Because we are Contemplatives in Action our Thanks is expressed in how we are offering our lives for each other in the name of Christ. We love the God we cannot see in loving the neighbor we see. We bear with everything hard or difficult in the name of Christ. We obtain the salvation that in in Christ Jesus by all our actions in his name. Whatever we do should be done thankfully in the name of Christ. 

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