Reflections on the Daily Readings
from the Perspective of Creighton Students
November 11th, 2012
Bio | Email: ConanRainwater@creighton.edu
Over my college fall break, I went on a service trip that worked with an organization that builds sustainable housing for low-income families. One of the many things I realized during that weeklong trip was how much I hold back on giving myself to others. One of the people I met on that trip that impacted me was the carpenter supervisor. Besides teaching us to install drywall, build a small shed, and replace windows, he showed me how to fully give my talent and time without counting the costs. For all of these tasks, he had to explain step by step how to do it, and he never became frustrated on how slow we were hammering nails or many we bent, but instead only grew in patience. Although he could finish almost all the tasks faster by himself since he know exactly how to do everything unlike me as a unskilled volunteer, he gave of his time to teach us anyway. Seeing how selfless he was made me think of how I sometimes hold back to serve others.
Just as our supervisor was generous in giving of his time to teach volunteers, the two widows encountered in today’s readings show unselfishness. In the first reading today, the woman put her trust in Elijah and baked him bread, even though it was the last of the food for her and her son. I took this to mean that I should give of myself first, now matter what it may cause to me. The quality therefore that I need to grown in is generosity. However, although generosity is a vital aspect, another thing that I noticed in the readings is a leap of faith. The widow from the first reading and the gospel had to take a leap of faith and trust in their generosity. The widow from the first reading took a leap of faith by using the last of her flour and oil to make bread for Elijah. Similarly, the poor widow from the gospel took a leap of faith by giving everything she had to the treasury. Both of these widows held nothing back, but gave everything that they have to others.
Reflecting on these readings showed me my weakness of withholding myself to serve others. I have done it when I say I have to leave instead of fully listening to a friend who needs to talk over things. It has also occurred when I think of what I will gain or what reward I will receive from my service instead of doing it freely out of love. I have failed to be generous when I say I do not have enough time or am too exhausted. All of these cases hint at the fact that I sometimes restrain myself from fully giving myself to others.
Let us pray for a generosity that holds nothing back, a generosity that never ceases to be in service to others, a generosity that seeks no reward.
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