Imagine how Saul must have felt when he awoke from his sleep and saw his spear missing from its resting place. Now imagine how he felt when he realized that the person who had it was the same person seeking his life - and there he sat, safe and sound. Now there’s a day you don’t forget your morning prayers.READ MORE
One of the things about Scripture is that even the smallest word and shortest phrase can be critical to the overall message. When you take a quiet moment to rest with the Word, you find how quickly the most mundane sentence can reach out and grab you, pulling you into a deeper contemplation of some truth you hadn’t even considered until then.READ MORE
“If every flower wanted to be a rose,” wrote St. Therese of Lisieux, “spring would lose its loveliness.”
Who is God asking you to be today? There is an obvious answer that springs to mind right out of the gate. God wants me to be a good person (a good father, a good husband) today; today, God wants me to be a saint.
But this answer fails to get to the heart of the question. We are all striving today to serve the same Spirit, but we are given different gifts to do so. The one who has the gift of knowledge may fail if today he decides he wants to be a healer. The one who has the gift of “varieties of tongues” might falter in the expression of wisdom.
Think about the wedding at Cana and the players in the scene: the servers, the guests, the bride and groom. They all have a unique role to play, and though it is to the servers that Mary gives the instruction, “Do whatever he tells you,” her words apply to all.
Today, are we called to be the servers — do we wait on God’s instruction and carry it out, no matter how foolish or impossible it may seem to our human ears? Are we asked to be the disciples, to bear witness to a miracle and to give our testimony? Are we called to imitate the Blessed Mother herself and give encouragement to follow God’s word?
Let us examine our gifts and listen in the silence of our hearts to the direction of the Spirit. Then and only then, let us do whatever He tells us.
— Tracy Earl Welliver, MTS
“Who is this Christ? Is he like you?”
Perhaps you’ve heard this story, often attributed to the life of St. Teresa of Calcutta. A sick man asked her this question, as he marveled at her tireless service to himself and others in the name of someone named Jesus Christ.
“He is nothing like me,” the saint is said to have answered. “But I hope I am like him.”
Though the authenticity of this exchange cannot be verified, its message rings perfectly true: all the value of our stewardship lies in its relativity to the one in whose name we perform it.
Consider the figure of John the Baptist — a magnificent, towering character even purely from a literary or historical perspective. A martyr who fed on wild locusts and boldly spoke truth to power — a man so great some mistook him for the Messiah.
But why is he great? Because he prepared the way. All his accomplishments and escapades mean nothing if they are taken out of the context of salvation history. He only makes sense relative to Christ — and this is exactly as he wanted it. “One worthier than I is coming,” he insists. And because of that humility and that total embrace of God’s will, he is given one of the greatest honors in the New Testament — he baptizes the Son of God.
Let’s examine our lives in the light of their relativity to Christ. How do we prepare the way? When Christ comes to us, what do we do? How do we leave ourselves open to be actors in God’s plan?
— Tracy Earl Welliver, MTS
If you own a television that has been turned on at any point in the last month or so, chances are you’ve caught at least a scene or two of the 1946 classic film “It’s a Wonderful Life.”
If you’re not familiar with the movie, it follows the life of George Bailey from childhood through adulthood. A dreamer by nature, George has big plans for himself that involve world exploration and adventure — but family and community obligations keep him tethered to the same spot on the map, leading an altogether ordinary life.READ MORE
At first glance, we can often find the image of the Blessed Mother, St. Joseph and the Christ Child intimidating — who are we to aspire to that level of discipleship? How could we ever hope to conform ourselves to that mold? Sometimes, it can even be painful — perhaps we hail from a broken family or struggle with a broken relationship within our family, or perhaps we long to be a mother or a father ourselves and that state in life has eluded us.READ MORE
Depending on how your mood is today, the words of Paul will hit you differently. “Rejoice always,” he tells us. Well, if your football team is poised to win this weekend or next, maybe you’re really feeling this vibe. But if you’ve got a long slog at work ahead of you this week and a to-do list that only seems to grow and never shrink, it may make you grumble. “Rejoice always? Always? When I’m tired? Cranky? When I’m sick of doing and giving? Thanks, Paul. I’ll be sure to scribble that phrase on a Post-It and stick it to my dashboard for when some entitled punk inevitably cuts me off on tomorrow’s morning commute.”READ MORE
WWJD bracelets were all the rage about 25 years ago in Christian circles. I’ve always wondered if a WWMD bracelet might not make just as much sense, and maybe more. What Would Mary Do?
I would argue that Mary was the most exemplary steward who ever lived. Her answer was always “Yes.” Yes, Lord, I am Your handmaiden. Yes, I will visit Elizabeth, and help her in the last difficult months of pregnancy. Yes, I will bring my son up in the Mosaic law and present him at the Temple of Jerusalem. Yes, I will give him to the crowds and to public ministry. Yes, I will offer him on this Cross, if it is Your will.READ MORE
“Get up and eat, or the journey will be too much for you.” I’ve been to a lot of meetings in my years of work in the Church, and you can take my word for it: the ones with snacks just seem to go better.
I don’t know what it is exactly. Maybe it’s just that people are in a more agreeable mood if you show up with donuts. Or maybe it’s about the very real sense of community and camaraderie that is created at a table where people are engaging in that most human of tasks eating beside one another. I think a big part of it comes down to the simple fact that we’re all just nicer people when we’re fed.READ MORE
Looking back over my journey of parenthood, I know there were days when I traveled the extra mile for my children. I made their toast the way they like it, let them play in the park an extra ten minutes, or let them go to the movies with their friends and I finished up the chores on my own. And then, it happened: the attitude. The request for the smallest thing from one of them is met with disdain or bewilderment.READ MORE