“ We live in a time where the focus is on self, self-actualization and self-determination. We define who we are, and what we are to be and no one is going to tell us what to do. We are our own man, or our own woman, we believe we determine our future, and we will shape our outcomes. We live in a time and place where we believe it’s all about us, and what we decide what is to become us.
The word of God that we hear today is truly a word that goes against the norms of culture and society and we may even find it hard to hear. Having come through the storm, not knowing what our future would be, not knowing if we would have a home, or school, or a job when we returned. Our lives were quickly turned inside out and upside down. Worry filled our minds and hearts, we just found ourselves confused as to what we should do and where we should go. All and all even though we prayed for an outcome, we were not sure what that would be.
You see I believe that moments like this remind us as Paul says so plainly and truly. “If we live, we are the Lord’s and if we die we are the Lord’s. so then whether we live or if we die, We are the Lord’s.” This understanding of belonging to the Lord, being God’s own special possession no matter what our situation or our circumstance is we are the Lord’s. Being that we are the Lord’s our life is not about us and what we want, but rather it is about what God desires for our life. When we resign ourselves to the Lord and his will and plan for our lives it is then that we find our peace.
It isn’t that we shouldn’t strive or seek the path to greatness, to achieve and overcome, but it is the frame of mind, and true inner understanding we embrace. It is that ultimately we belong to God, as Paul states in Romans 14:7-12 we are the Lord’s and so let us begin to ask a new question. Let us reform our frame of mind and outlook on life to a simple question. “Lord how can you use me for your glory? Lord what is your will and desire for my life?
A narsasitic, self observed perception of life and the world is not only unrealistic but set us up for failure. We are the Lord’s and the Lord desires to use us to do great things with our lives and the gifts he’s given us. To live for God and others is the greatest way to greatness, Jesus tells us the greatest amongst us is the one who is willing to be servant of all. Let all that we choose and observe be ultimately for God’s great honor and glory.
To embrace the living Word of God that Paul presents us today, it requires a true seeking after God, inviting God to allow his very presence to live in you. Let His Word be our daily bread, spoken to us, to change and transform us. I spoke with a young lady in our church neighborhood who spoke of changing herself. My response was “wonderful, your openness to the Holy Spirit living in you is what brings about true change”.
In this blog I encourage you, if your reading this to open your heart to hear and receive God’s Word, spoken this week by the Apostle Paul. In life and in death We are the Lord’s. We do not seek to judge others for their actions, but rather we seek to live for God and in living for Him, share the love of Jesus placed in our hearts.
Fr. Stephan Brown, SVD