Monday, October 06, 2014

May the Lord Be Glorified Because Of Me

By Beth DeCristofaro

Brothers and sisters:  You heard of my former way of life in Judaism, how I persecuted the Church of God beyond measure and tried to destroy it … But when he, who from my mother’s womb had set me apart and called me through his grace, was pleased to reveal his Son to me, so that I might proclaim him to the Gentiles … they only kept hearing that “the one who once was persecuting us is now preaching the faith he once tried to destroy.”  So they glorified God because of me. (Galatians 1: 13, 14-15, 23-24)

The Lord said to her in reply, “Martha, Martha, you are anxious and worried about many things. There is need of only one thing.   Mary has chosen the better part and it will not be taken from her.”  (Luke 10:41-42)

O LORD, you have probed me and you know me;
you know when I sit and when I stand;
you understand my thoughts from afar.
My journeys and my rest you scrutinize,
with all my ways you are familiar.
Guide me, Lord, along the everlasting way.  (Psalm 139: 1-3)

Yesterday’s Gospel was the parable of the Good Samaritan in which Jesus’ showed how to love my neighbor as myself.  It is simply responding with loving care to the person right there in front of you who is in need.  Today we have Martha, busy in the kitchen (and if she was like me, running down the hall to take a quick cleaning swipe in the bathroom even as guests are arriving).  She is reaching out to meet the needs of those in need of refreshment and hospitality.  But she isn’t seeing who is in front of her.  Rather she sees what she “should” be doing and is distracted by responsibility and tasks.

Saul did not see evidence of the Messiah.  He was focused instead on his own agenda.  And yet with the wisdom of the Holy Spirit He, now Paul, realized that God had chosen him to proclaim Christ in spite of his lack of love for neighbor, his deadly obsession with persecuting the followers of Christ.  His dramatic conversion freed him up to hear and see God as he was unable before and to love his neighbor in a manner which showed God’s glory to unbelievers in remote parts of the known world.

At times I leave Mass and within minutes grow frustrated at other drivers or with a co-worker who is inconveniencing me.  This is clearly not choosing the better part.  In what way can I, today, sit myself at the feet of Jesus in spite of responsibilities and distractions and be present with Him so that His glory shines through the ordinary day to day actions I take?  How can I also look for God’s glory in the actions of others who have been called by name just as I have been called by name?  Give thanks for God’s presence all day.

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