Today’s Thoughts: There are two things that strike me in today’s readings. First in the Acts of the Apostles we encounter a moment of struggle within the early Church. Some want to keep things as they are. They don’t want to break with tradition, while others see no need for past tradition. The struggle focuses on past Jewish traditions and the emerging new Church into which gentles are entering. Paul and Barnabas decide to go to Jerusalem and talk about the problem. What a novel idea, sitting down and talking about issues, problems, struggles and differing views of Church. Perhaps Pope Francis has taken a page from the Acts of the Apostles over the last five years!
My second thought comes from the Gospel. Not too long-ago Jesus offered us the image of the Good Shepherd – God as the shepherd always watching out for us, always taking care of us, always walking with us. It is a comforting image of God’s presence in our life. Today the image is of God as the life-giving vine extending out into the world through us the branches. God becomes the vine running through our life offering us grace by which we grow into the person we have been created be so that we can produce the fruit of God’s presence and love in the world.
As a branch of God’s presence and love in the world we don’t have to know everything. We are a branch running from the Vine. It is the Vine that offers us everything that we need as long as we stay attached. We cannot do it on our own we must depend on the Vine – God’s presence, grace, love, mercy, forgiveness and joy to produce good fruit.
Jesus through the image of the vine and the branches reminds us today that the more we are connected to God, the more we lean on God, and the more we learn from God and experience God’s presence in the world around us, the better we will be at living life – the more fruit we will produce!
Have a great Wednesday 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...