Today’s Thoughts: “Rejoice in hope, endure in affliction, persevere in prayer.” These words from St. Paul sit at the heart of our scriptures today. We are asked by St. Paul today to share our hopes and gifts no matter how ordinary we might think those hopes and gifts are.
St. Paul uses the body as an image for our relationship with God as church. We are the body of Christ and because we are one body we need to work together thus giving the fullness of life to the whole body. Perhaps said differently, St. Paul asks us not to be so self-absorbed that we forget about the whole, that we forget about others.
He lists seven gifts; prophecy, ministry, teaching, exhortation almsgiving, administration and mercy. These are important to the Church and the Body of Christ. These are necessary for the Church and the Body of Christ to grow. If the individual members try to stand alone they will not last long. Standing together, working in unison, the individual members become a strong body and that brings hope to all the members.
Our Gospel today reinforces St. Paul’s reflection. We cannot fight over or promote our own individual gifts. Jesus’ invitation is to be Church, is to be community. Using St. Paul’s image, we might imagine how helpless just an arm, or a leg, or a mouth, or an ear, or a hand would be alone. They only have power and strength when they are working together.
For Jesus and St. Paul we are to be a joy filled community of hope, working together, strengthened by prayer so that we can make it through even the most difficult times to the eternal banquet that God has prepared for us all!
Have a great Tuesday everyone.
Fr. Paul R. Fagan, C.P. "Preacher on the Run"
Just a few thoughts to help you on your journey through life...let me know from time to time what you think...