Monday, May 13, 2013

Path to Summer

Women of Faith:

The allure of the promise of summer sunshine is tempered by sunglasses, wind, and rain.
The blinders of friends, the winds of society, and the pull of the gravity of cultural politics make walking into the sunshine on a straight and narrow path difficult. 

The path also has deep ditches on either side: the law on one side and my personal “feel good” wants and desires on the other. And the blinders, the winds and gravity make it very easy to be pulled into the ditches of “the law says it’s okay” or “it must be okay, because I feel happy.”
And it is difficult to climb up out of the ditch and change when we fall off the path. But that is what we are promised by Christ’s cross, by Scripture, by Church teachings and thru the lives of the Saints. We are reminded that we won’t necessarily “feel good” while striving for God’s kingdom, but that we can change and get back on the path and that we can be forgiven for stepping off.

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are they who mourn, for they will be comforted. Blessed are the meek, for they will inherit the land. Blessed are they who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they will be satisfied. Blessed are the merciful, for they will be shown mercy. Blessed are the clean of heart, for they will see God. Blessed are the peacemakers, for they will be called children of God. Blessed are they who are persecuted for the sake of righteousness, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven. Blessed are you when they insult you and persecute you and utter every kind of evil against you [falsely] because of me. Rejoice and be glad, for your reward will be great in heaven. Thus they persecuted the prophets who were before you. Mt 5: 3-12
Do we fall off the path because the sun that is guiding us is shadowed by the beliefs of our friends and neighbors who say “it’s right because everyone is doing it?” Do we use slang words that are a common part of our language but that are sexually suggestive (taking God’s name in vain), by taking what is not rightfully ours from others or our workplace, such as tools and office supplies etc. (stealing), or by accepting that it is okay to live together before marriage and to have sex outside of marriage (fornication/adultery).

Are we pulled away from the sun by the gravity of laws that are passed by the powers and the principalities? Does our business set unreasonable prices because the government can afford it, the $468 hammer (free enterprise), does our government allow the union of same sex partners as marriage (equality), and do we shut our eyes against the evils of abortion (freedom to choose)? Is law setting its own path of promise and side-stepping God’s design for humanity, marriage and His commandments (stealing and killing)?
Or is the straight and narrow path dulled by the rain of the tears of pain? Often we will be asked to embrace suffering and accept grief. Rain can either wash us off the path in anger and blame or cleanse and clear the path through acceptance and forgiveness.

The ultimate reward is at the end of God’s path…. “Son”shine in heaven….priceless!!
"Amen, amen, I say to you, you will weep and mourn, while the world rejoices; you will grieve, but your grief will become joy. When a woman is in labor, she is in anguish because her hour has arrived; but when she has given birth to a child, she no longer remembers the pain because of her joy that a child has been born into the world. So you also are now in anguish. But I will see you again, and your hearts will rejoice, and no one will take your joy away from you. Jn 16: 20-22

Heavenly Father the joy you promise is unending. Help me to search for and to strive to live by Your truth. Thank you for giving me living examples, like Mary and the Saints (Saint Paul, Saint Francis, Mother Teresa, and many more) for they inspire me to know that I can change, be forgiven and survive human suffering (just as Christ did) and reach your unending joy in heaven. Amen.
Will we step off to the side of the path, fall into the ditches of law, and blindly fall into the depths of the acceptance of cultural evil and sin? Or will we walk the straight and very narrow difficult path, following the allure of His son who shined thru gravity, wind and rain by speaking the truth, accepting our sufferings and showing us how to live righteously?

God’s promise is that His path will lead us to a joy that no one can take away.
May you be filled with the Spirit to stay on His path and search for that joy,

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