February 13, 2017
by Ann Mausbach
Creighton University's Education Department
click here for photo and information about the writer

Monday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 335

Genesis 4:1-15, 25
Ps 50:1 and 8, 16bc-17, 20-21
Mark 8:11-13

Praying Ordinary Time

Have you ever participated in a “forced choice” exercise? Oxymoron aside, this activity asks participants to choose between a limited number of options. Participants get to choose, but the choices are predetermined. The illusion of choice might be a better name.  

Today’s readings are an example of how much God loves us by giving us the ability to choose. There are no predetermined options, the way we live is up to us.  There are no illusions. Our choices are on us.

In the first reading, Cain and Abel choose which sacrifices they will offer God. Abel’s choice of offering his best first flockling showed that his relationship with God was front and center.  Cain’s sacrifice, delivered “in the course of time”, communicated a different message. God let them choose. And even though Cain’s choice wasn’t the best, God still loved him by watching over him.

The gospel is all about choice. By asking us to look within ourselves God is letting us choose how we live our lives. Are we a sign of faith, hope, or love? Do we see the good things God’s presence in our lives bring us and give praise?

God’s love for us is so great  that he is still with us even when some of our choices aren’t so great. Today let’s pray that our daily actions, words, and deeds become a symbol to others. The sign we hang doesn’t have to be big and flashy just simple and clear. Make good choices and love one another.

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