Monday, May 27, 2013

Vacation Time

Women of Faith:

This weekend officially begins summer “vacation time.”
We are enjoying a visit with Sara, Luke, Colby and Karolina, and Andy. We consider ourselves richly blessed to be able to enjoy their laughter, conversation, and chatter, and to get away from the rest of the world for a few long gorgeous Colorado mountain days.

And although it seems as if we have to “fit” them into our schedule, our time together is never long enough. I am always looking forward to the hugs and kisses, conversations, and a chance to attend church together—which has for me always been the ultimate prayer of love and togetherness.
And the time in God’s house to give thanks for His every blessing, receive His unending mercy and forgiveness, and to be blessed with the fulfillment of Christ’s promised Eucharistic meal is such an opportunity.  It is THE perfect vacation:  being joyfully together with family AND getting away from worldly responsibilities.

There is joy, beauty and the richness as we ask God to join our family: “In the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit” each time we pray and or enter his Holy house.  This invitation for Him to join us brings our worldly family together with Him and our two worlds together, a true vacation!!
As Jesus was setting out on a journey, a man ran up, knelt down before him, and asked him, “Good teacher, what must I do to inherit eternal life?” Jesus answered him, “Why do you call me good?
No one is good but God alone.
You know the commandments: …...”

He replied and said to him, “Teacher, all of these I have observed from my youth.”  Jesus, looking at him, loved him and said to him, “You are lacking in one thing. Go, sell what you have, and give to the poor and you will have treasure in heaven; then come, follow me.” At that statement, his face fell, and he went away sad, for he had many possessions.
Jesus looked around and said to his disciples, “How hard it is for those who have wealth to enter the Kingdom of God!” The disciples were amazed at his words.
So Jesus again said to them in reply,
“Children, how hard it is to enter the Kingdom of God!
It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for one who is rich to enter the Kingdom of God.” Mk 10: 17-27

We are on a journey: a journey from earth to heaven. Just as the journeying man, who met Jesus on the way, our journey is one of working here on earth, following Jesus’ commandments, and doing his will, so that we can achieve an unending vacation in heaven.
As Jesus said to his disciples, it is hard to give up earthly wealth and possessions even for those who so greatly desire the ultimate heavenly vacation (more difficult than for a camel to go through the eye of a needle!)

The more we have (work and ownership/possessions), the more we are given the responsibility to choose to do God’s will with what we have.
We receive a blessing from God each time we attend church. He never goes on vacation away from us. Do we go on vacation from him? Do we choose the short term joy of a boat or motorcycle ride over the long term joy of keeping His commandment by attending church on Sunday morning?

Is it as exciting to get away from our worldly possessions and spend vacation time with God (or to go to church while on vacation) as it is to use our earthly possessions and go on vacation to some exotic destination?
Do we find time to serve the poor, a youngster in need of a friend, or to visit someone who is sick, has lost a loved one, or is lonely? Or do we just “fit” them in when it is convenient for us? Is something “worldly” more important than the heavenly joy (vacation) seen on the faces of those we serve?

Who or what “fits” first into our schedules? Do our possessions possess us or do we give God thanks for giving them to us so that we can find joy (a vacation) in them?
Heavenly Father from you I have received every blessing, every earthly possession and a promise of heavenly riches. Thank you for merging your world with ours by allowing us time to spend time with our earthly family in Your church. Help me to not just “fit you in,” but to realize that the best vacation time is time spent with you. Thank you for blessing us with the richness of a close, loving, family. Help me to choose to give earthly wealth (time AND treasures) so that I may achieve a greater wealth with you in heaven. Amen.

God blesses us with time to spend on vacation, away from this world, by calling to Him in prayer anywhere or by visiting Him at his house anytime, not just during the summer.
Enjoy your vacation with family AND with God,

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