Daily Reflection
September 11th, 2001
Rev. Richard Gabuzda
Institute for Priestly Formation
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Colossians 2:6-15
Psalms 145:1-2, 8-9, 10-11
Luke 6:12-19

Strange Choices

Personnel departments of universities and businesses spend hours poring over resumes and letters of recommendation, looking for the “right” person to hire.  The needs of a position matched with an applicant’s adequate credentials are needed for the perfect “fit.”

Whatever happened that night when Jesus spent hours “in communion with God” we don’t know for sure, but we look on with amazement at “the Twelve” whom he selected from the disciples to be his most intimate followers and co-laborers.  Of the twelve, here is a sampling of their “job performance”:  one denied knowing him when questioned about their relationship, two others were hot-tempered and rash (“Call down fire from heaven to destroy them!”), one wouldn’t believe without seeing, and one, finally, betrayed him, handing him over to those who would put him to death.  So much for careful screening!

Or is something else being said?  With the exception of the last, all underwent remarkable transformations, conversions, leading them to become fearless proclaimers of the Name, even to their own deaths.  What are we to make of this?  A concise phrase sums it up well:  if it is true that God often calls those who are qualified, it is also true that he “qualifies” those whom he calls. 

There is encouragement here for all those who “have been called.”  God often provides “on the job training,” drawing out of us what we did not know was there, and transforming us into his instruments in ways we could not possibly imagine.  When faced with their inadequacies, all—with one exception—acknowledged their weakness and professed their faith anew.  Therein is found the seed of conversion and deeper witness.  Peter’s “Lord, you know that I love you” and Thomas’ “My Lord and my God” show us how to respond in the face of our own inadequacies and failures. 

May we, in discovering our shortcomings, allow the Lord to “qualify” us for the task to which he has called us. 

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