Wednesday, July 7, 2010

A new field

“Sow for yourselves justice, reap the fruit of piety;
Break up for yourselves a new field, for it is time to seek the Lord,
Till He come and rain down justice upon you.”
-Hosea 10

Sometimes when I pray with the daily Mass readings, a verse will strike me. Usually it's a Gospel reading; I'm pretty much a New Testament man. However this time it was Hosea. Break up for ourselves a new field...I've heard many metaphors for starting a new habit, beginning a new course of action, etc. But preparing a stony field to bear fruit is something I'd not considered before.

I'm not really a farmer/gardener...pretty much born with a black thumb. From what I understand, ground that has not been used for farming before needs to go through many processes before it will bear fruit. It takes hard grunt work, like breaking up the ground. It takes proper composting (usually with scraps and castoffs of previous fruits and veggies). It takes precise watering. It takes care. It takes time. And most of all it takes patience before the fruits of our labors are realized. Then the seasons change and we must begin all over again.

It's not enough to break ground, however. We must labor in the fields before the harvest comes in.

Dear Jesus, give us courage to break new ground, the patience to tend the fruits of our labors for our betterment and the betterment of our world, and the perseverance to continue this always. Help us recognize the worth of everything from past harvests that we may "compost" for the future.


Daily Mass Readings
Hosea 10:1-3,7-8,12
Psalm 105:2-7
Matthew 10:1-7


  1. Quite frankly, it makes me sick to see you spout the wonders of the Gospels, yet completely twist what they mean.

    The devil preaches 99 % truth, but it is just that 1% that is completely off and leads people astray. Some of your stuff is wonderful and inspirational, but it is that 1% of your stuff which is completely off and disturbs me as a Catholic. I do not like to call myself a Catholic, because it is a practice, and something which is hard to obtain, but I do know for a fact that some of the things you write are NOT Catholic and if anything are anti-Catholic.

    You write that you were called to be a priest. Quite frankly, I am happy you did not become a priest. I can rest at peace at night that there was less ill informed priest. You are better of being a lowly father in some New York suburb. Thank you for getting married and not becoming a priest.

  2. Sara - If you're still following this particular blog, my apologies for not responding to you until now. I don't get an awful lot of comments as you can see, so I rarely check back on older entries.

    I guess I envy your faith in a way; I'm am not nearly as sure about how I am with God as you seem to be. The title of this blog - Wrestling with Angels - was chosen precisely because of my stumbling and sinning and the questions and doubts I have. I'm sorry you feel the way you do about some of the things I've written - the Scriptures speak to me as they will, and if you can show me where I have knowingly taken a passage and twisted it, please show me, and I promise you I will recant my stance.

    I've never, ever claimed to have all the answers or be 100% comfortable with the answers I have received. A comfort of mine is that many of our great saints, who we look to for an example of how to live a Christian life, had struggles with their faith as well, Blessed Mother Teresa immediately comes to mind.

    Being a Husband and Father is many things, good and bad, but it certainly is not "lowly". Matrimony is every bit the Sacrament and vocation from God as Holy Orders are. And I must agree...I am happy I am not a priest today as well. I would neever have known my wonderful wife and children.

    Peace be with you

  3. I think Sara needs to cite some evidence to back her argument. All I see here is a rant that has no justification. What is anti-Catholic that you write, Tom? Why bring the "devil" into it? -- that's just a loaded word. Why are you a "lowly father in a New York suburb" because you interpreted a Bible passage in a different way than her? How much training as a priest does Sara have that makes her an expert on "ill informed" priests? And finally, how many hours does she stay awake worrying about such priests?

    Quite frankly, I would not give this particular comment much credibility as it is written. It's all emotional with no substance.

  4. A few kind words for the unkind Sara:

    -If you have nothing nice to say, say nothing.
    -If you disagree with someone else's point of view, respect their right to do so and move on.
    -He who is without sin shall cast the first stone.

    I have little respect for someone who criticizes the author of this blog for having a different interpretation of scripture, when clearly it is an admittance of his own humanity and search for the truth in is calling, recognizing his own flaws, striving to improve.

    Speaking of flaws, I would like to point out some of yours, that are NOT open to interpretation:
    " I can rest at peace at night that there was less ill informed priest. You are better of being a lowly father in some New York suburb. Thank you for getting married and not becoming a priest. "

    The correct grammar would be "...that there is one less ill-informed priest", and "of" should be "off". Get your nose out of the bible and into a dictionary.

    Also, there is NOTHING LOWLY ABOUT BEING A FATHER. Especially someone who professes to becoming the best he can, to care for and inspire his family, together in faith and love. The devil is nowhere to be seen when that truth exists.

    And Anti-Catholic???? Learn more about the Secular Franciscan Order before you accuse.

    I have 16 years of private Catholic school education, and I'm from a little NY non-suburb called Brooklyn, if you care to take this outside....