October 27, 2014
Jan Schnack

Creighton's Center for Research and Evaluation
click here for photo and information about the writer

Monday of the Thirtieth Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 479

Ephesians 4:32-5:8
Psalm 1:1-2, 3, 4 and 6
Luke 13:10-17

Praying Ordinary Time

Brothers and sisters:
Be kind to one another, compassionate,
forgiving one another as God has forgiven you in Christ. Ephesians 4:32-33

I have a little story to share about my dog Champion.  He is a big dog, a Chesapeake Bay retriever.  We live on a farm and Champ loves to go for walks out to the center pivot and back with me.  He never goes on his own but always waits for me to go with him.  I find this very touching and special.  On our walk this past Saturday afternoon, I found myself once again engrossed in talking and talking and talking to God.  Then something happened on that crisp, beautiful fall afternoon and it became abundantly clear to me that I had become self-absorbed in my relationship with God doing all the talking and no listening.  Upon this conviction, my heart ached and I cried out to God to help me with this weakness I was struggling with. 

The very next day I was in my car listening to Catholic radio and I heard a man say that the best way to listen to God was through Scripture.  My response was thank you God for such an immediate response to my cry for help.  God reminded me how awesome it is to listen to him through Scripture.  If I really do believe that God speaks to us through Scripture (and I do), today’s readings are quite powerful.  We are called upon to be kind to one another and compassionate.  We are called to forgive one another as God has forgiven us in Christ.  It is easier to be kind, compassionate and forgiving to those that are kind, compassionate and forgiving.  What becomes difficult is to be kind, compassionate and forgiving to those that aren’t so kind, compassionate or forgiving.  What is comforting is that we don’t have to do this on our own.  We have the Holy Spirit to help us be imitators of God and live in love as Christ loved us.  Powerful stuff!  

As far as my walks with Champ, I seldom see him once we set out.  He is busy running through the field chasing all sorts of creatures along the way.  Walking with Champ reminds me of walking with God.  I might not be able to physically see him throughout the walk, yet I know he is there and I know how important our walks together are.  The same can be said for with my relationship with God.  I can’t physically see him, but I know he is there and I know how important our time together is.  He is always available to walk and is so happy when I make the effort to show up to be with him.  I am so grateful to be on this path to be an imitator of God.

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