Saturday, November 21, 2009

One Solitary LIfe

Father Jerry read this poem during his homily this evening, on the Solemnity of Christ the King. Never was there such a King as this:

One Solitary Life
He was born in an obscure village,
The child of a peasant woman.
He grew up in still another village,
Where he worked in a carpenter shop
Until he was thirty.

Then for three years
He was an itinerant preacher.
He never wrote a book.
He never held an office.
He never had a family or owned a house.
He didn't go to college.
He never visited a big city.
He never traveled two hundred miles
From the place where he was born.
He did none of the things
One usually associates with greatness.
He had no credentials but himself.

He was only thirty-three
When the tide of public opinion turned against him.
His friends ran away.
He was turned over to his enemies.
And went through the mockery of a trial.

He was nailed to a cross
Between two thieves.
While he was dying,
His executioners gambled for his clothing,
The only property he had on Earth.
When he was dead,
He was laid in a borrowed grave
Through the pity of a friend.

Twenty centuries have come and gone,
And today he is the central figure
Of the human race,
And the leader of mankind's progress.

All the armies that ever marched,
All the navies that ever sailed,
All the parliament that ever sat,
All the kings that ever reigned,
Put together have not affected
The life of Man on Earth
As much as that

One Solitary Life.

~~Dr James Allen Francis, © 1926~~

And in the words of Forrest Gump, "That's all I have to say about that."

Peace and All Good,

The Solemnity of Christ the King
Daily Mass Readings
Daniel 7:13-14
Psalm 93:1-2,5
Revelations 1:5-8
John 18:33b-37

Sunday, November 15, 2009

The day or the hour

"But of that day or hour, no one knows,
neither the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father."

- Mark 13:32

As we approach the end of the liturgical year, the Daily Readings turn toward not only the Nativity of the Christ, but the Second Coming of Christ. That we are to be awake and live our lives ready for the coming of our Brother Jesus. Today's Gospel is especially apt for me. I've recently allowed an unwanted complacency take over my family life, going hand in hand with my prayer life, explained in the previous blog. Hmmm...could they POSSIBLY be related?

For various reasons, I have not been awake. I have not been ready. I have been living my life in tomorrow, as in, "Ahhhh, it'll keep. I'll play soccer or chess with the kids tomorrow. I'll take my wife out tomorrow. I'll help around the house tomorrow. I'll get to the gym tomorrow" Tomorrow, Tomorrow, Tomorrow.

Living in tomorrow (as well as in yesterday, which augments this problem) leaves no time for today. Today, which is the only time we have actually have; yesterday is gone forever, tomorrow never comes. My boys, 9 and 12, are going to get to the point where they're not going to WANT to hang out with me anymore. I have a brief window between my children being fully dependent on me, and thinking they don't need me at all. THIS is my time with them and I am letting it get away from me. By the same token, I am letting my time with Lori, and my responsibilties at home get away from me as well.

And, perhaps herein lies the "water" for the dryness in my spiritual life; to follow the wisdom on the Scriptures and remember that none of us know the day or the hour. I forget sometimes (more often than not recently) of the sacredness of the everyday, the beauty and vocation of being a husband and father. I can't change a thing about yesterday, and I haven't a clue what tomorrow will bring. Part of the awe of the early Christian community was that they believed Christ's Second Coming was imminent; they fully understood not knowing the day or the hour.

Today's Gospel tells me I need to delight more in the bounty of blessings have right in front of me rather than be preoccupied with days/years/decades past or what I will be tomorrow or whatever time left I've been allotted.

Thank you Father Chris for your eye-opening homily this evening.


Daily Mass Readings
Daniel 12: 1-3
Psalm 16:5,8-11
Hebrews 10:11-14,18
Mark 13:24-32