Get ahead of that curve?

6/23/13
And day by day, attending the temple together and breaking bread in their homes, they received their food with glad and generous hearts, praising God and having favor with all the people.
Day by day, day in and day out…they persevered over time. And progressed. They labored, they endured.  Help me to realize that God should not “be grateful to that servant because he did what was commanded? So should it be with you. When you have done all you have been commanded, say, ‘We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do.’” The question, can we ever get ahead of that curve…no, and the reason is simple. In comparison with all that God has done for me, my service is not only negligible but unworthy of even mentioning. Second, when compared with my sins and offenses, it barely touches the surface…dust on the scales only. And third, I am humus, a creature, I was made to praise, reverence and serve God…this is my purpose in life and that is all-encompassing; in my delusion, I imagine that there is a scales, there is a tit-for-tat, an exchange of services. That is a sinful man’s lens, my lens of pride and false independence, not the reality which comes into focus for the humble, the contrite, the forgotten and ignored, the remnant…they, note I struggle to include myself among them, usually unsuccessfully, realize their place in the divine universe, the cosmos; they are humble and accept their role not only graciously but with thanksgiving, gratitude, joy and exuberance, with delight and eagerness, as an honor and a privilege. I pray to God for this attitude, desire this attitude, long for this attitude in my more realistic and rational moments. Bending my back to this cross, this juncture of earth and heaven, this dias upon which we all must abide, is impossible for me alone. Those who heard this said, “Then who can be saved?” And he said, “What is impossible for human beings is possible for God.” Amen. Alleluia!!!

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In other tongues: Meditation on Acts 2:4

5/26/13
“and began to speak in other tongues as the Spirit gave them utterance.” Acts 2:4
Does the Spirit do this to each of us in a unique way. If I think of speaking “in other tongues,” analogously, it could be applied to manifesting God in different ways, in each of our lives, in a form custom tailored to meet a particular need in the Mystical Body, the Church, the Kingdom of God. Indeed, if I look upon the special blend of charisms in the particular context of my life applied to my set of circumstances, I am indeed speaking “in other tongues” of God to the world around me…and to myself.
For the language is idiosyncratic, manifesting both a public and a very personal side. The public side speaks to those around me, and God provides me feedback in complimentary comments from others for the Good performed in which they are seeing God in action through his instrument, and in the effectiveness of my work, in which He has given “success to the work of our hands,” Ps 90, [though God’s judges “success” differently than I do, being judged on in terms of the evolution of the trifold Cosmic Kingdom, Triumphant, Suffering and Militant rather than the mundane temporal outcome] which follows as day the night, if God is doing the task, it is His “will be done.” Even the place often seems to exude the appropriateness of God manifesting His presence everywhere.

Personally, there is a sense of correctness, the rightness, aka righteousness, I experience, a sense of the serendipity of “our greatest longing meeting the world’s greatest need,” and the serenity, exuberance and energy and even of accomplishment, in applying myself to the task.

These personal charisms are, as George MacDonald commented, God’s gift of “a white stone upon which is inscribed a new name, which no one knows except the one who receives it.” Rev 2:17 It is unique to me, without parallel, an intimate token of friendship, the five or two or one talent which he entrusts to me.

However, prior to the stone, John sees God giving “to the victor…some of the hidden manna,” the food of life to which Jesus referred: “My food is to do the will of the one who sent me and to finish his work.” Jn 4:34. The utilization of the charisms feeds me spiritually and psychologically. Part of each cross is that this work, the call to evangelization, that harkens back to my “baptism with which I must be baptized, and how great is my anguish until it is accomplished.” Lk 12:50 And this evangelization through charisms is to be carried out, as St. Francis exhorts, “always; when necessary, use words.”

God, I pray through Mary in Christ that you enable me, through your gifts, to praise, reverence and serve you as I, the “just me,” should. Amen. Alleluia!!!