The righteous will shine like the sun in the kingdom of their Father… Matthew 13:43
This Gospel reminds me how much Jesus wants us to “get it!” Not only does he tell the parable but he assembles the followers and explains it again. I can see myself saying, “OK Jesus, lets sit down and you can hit me with it again because I didn’t quite get it the first time.” I am so very thankful that he is patient with my thick headedness and offers us his teaching again and again and sends his Holy Spirit to make it clear in prayer.
I recently had a long conversation with a friend who was having a meltdown due to the “state of the world”. I agreed that there is no shortage of really lousy stuff goin on and I totally supported the meltdown because an occasional hissy fit is good for the soul. When we spew out all our frustration, worry and fear it’s like cleaning house. When we shove out the mess, we have an empty space but it’s up to us what we put back into that cleared out space. If we rant and rave and stay stuck in the yuck nothing good happens to our soul, our attitude or our relationship with Jesus. The point of a great meltdown is to get it all out and the next step is prayer…Lord I’ve cleared out the junk that was sitting heavy on my heart now help me fill it with YOU!
So how does that work exactly? There a couple of questions you can ask yourself. As you feel the yuck creeping back and putting wrinkles in your peace the first question is “Are these thoughts of God or of evil? Remember that God is a God of peace not turmoil. Second question, “Will spending time and energy on this bring me closer to Jesus?” If the answer is no then simply say “I send these unhelpful thoughts to the foot of the cross, Jesus please replace them with joy and peace.” Third, fill your ears, heart and mind with something lovely instead of ugly. Listen to a song or a podcast of a YouTube video designed to bring love, truth, joy or laughter into your day. The greatest strategy for managing the behavior of a toddler is distraction…it works on grownups too. Praying a Rosary for your list of worries and people who are really dancing on your last nerve or who have really hurt you is a powerful tool for doing something good with something awful. At the end of that Rosary close with the words, “Ok God, it’s yours…all of it, I’m letting go.”
When I listen to people say we are headed for sure disaster and the world is dark, I think of two things. God’s mercy and Noah. In God’s great mercy, when we face him at the end of our life we won’t be judged based on the actions, opinions or decisions of others. We won’t be judged as a group or need to provide a list of our known associates on earth. It’s just a solo event so isn’t it great that the only thing we will be judged on, is also the only thing we are in control of…ourselves! His mercy is so fancy isn’t it! As for Noah, he won the award for living among the greatest group of knuckleheads and off the rails idiots and what does scripture say about Noah? Very simply, it says “He was a righteous man; Noah walked in faith with God.” That’s it…that’s what it takes to rise about the yuck of the world; walk in faith with God. Trust him, follow him, talk with him and wake up each day saying, “Hold on God, I’m coming…I wanna belong to you today more than I want to worry and stew and fret about what everybody else is doing.” Say that, take a breath and then remember God can do anything and everything!
A Seed To Plant: Go ahead and have a meltdown or throw a hissy fit, God won’t mind. Then ponder one of the questions or actions in this blog that can help you fill that empty spot well. If you need someone to share your meltdown with, I’m happy to help!
Blessings on your day!
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