Daily Reflection

From a Creighton Student's Perspective

September 11, 2012

Damian Olsen

2nd Year Medical Student

Today's readings give us a variety of teachings that can each apply very directly to our daily lives. The first reading from Corinthians narrates the teaching of the church, not to judge one another, in a very interesting way. It always amazes me how quickly I can judge others at times. It seems the second I make the resolve to try and see others more with the eyes of Christ I am condemning someone in my thoughts. At times though I have to remind myself what judging someone really is. God gave us a conscience and he wrote his law upon our hearts. We therefore see something and are immediately able to judge it as right or wrong. It is what we do with that thought from there that turns it into a hateful, demeaning judgment or a loving prayer. We are constantly observing our surroundings and judging the world around us, this is only proper and natural to our human nature. However we need to be on guard, always reflecting on our thoughts and judgements to make sure they are bringing us and those around us closer to heaven.
If we strive hard enough we can even use the judgements we make as a prayer to God. For Jesus, just to breathe was a prayer. If prayer is communication and a connection with God, there was never a moment where he was not in union with the Father. So it is our goal and aim to make our lives reflect this in all that we do. It is much easier said than done, but when we see a person or a situation that we are able to judge as against God and his teachings, we can offer up those people to God in prayer. These may be the people furthest away from God who need a conversion to him more than any other. We do this not to gain ‘points’ to get ourselves closer to heaven or to be prideful and tote our holiness above others, but we do it out of compassion and love. It is similar to when Jesus saw the crowds and he was ‘moved with pity’, we have the eyes of faith so that we may bring the world around us closer to heaven. For some of these people, we may be the only ones who ever lift them up in prayer.
Jesus teaches us another thing about prayer in this great Gospel reading today. I am sure you have heard it before and contemplated it, but any time Jesus breaks away from the group to pray is pretty significant. We know something important is coming up when this happens, just look at the reading today or the agony in the garden. It is so easy to get caught up with our plans and goals in life, to think that we are in control and we have made ourselves what we are. However if you look back on even just your past week with a mature faith you will realize just how much has been a free gift from God to you. Everything is a gift, nothing good in our life is of our own doing. Jesus wants us to be grateful and recognize this, but we can be so prideful and self-centered. We see such humility in Christ today in the Gospel and his example of prayer. He humbled himself to allow the Father to work through him in choosing his Apostles. Just as he departs to pray before he calls his 12 Apostles, God wants us to bring everything before him in prayer so that he may bless it and more fully allow his will to be expressed in our lives. We know God is constantly working for our good, but even so he wants to know our thoughts and our struggles. The more we lift up our lives to him in prayer, the more we will be in constant communion with the Father as Christ was. This will allow us to see God's blessings in our lives and to really recognize that our plans and goals were never ours to begin with.
So today let us strive to mature in prayer as the readings call us to. Let our judgments allow us to be more constant intercessors and our communion with God make us more grateful servants. God desires all our love and attention, let us offer it to him that he may truly take delight in his people.

Send an e-mail to this writer: DamianOlsen@creighton.edu

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