“We know that in all things God works for good with those who love him, those whom he has called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28).
God breathes life into each newly created soul; an unrepeatable masterpiece fashioned in His image. His plan for us to know, love and serve Him is essential in understanding the value of human life! How do we thank God for this incredible opportunity to participate in His miraculous creation?
Building a relationship with God is key in our search for true happiness. Doors open in our lives when we are connected to His Church. Thomas Merton said, “Above all, faith is the opening of an inward eye, the eye of the heart, to be filled with the presence of Divine light.” The surest way to be happy is to seek happiness for others. When we intentionally share our faith in God, the lives of others may be changed. How does faith factor into your daily routine? We are very busy people, and taking time for prayer outside of our Sunday Mass obligation can be challenging.
We were stopped at a red light coming home from Tuesday evening Mass recently, and we were rear-ended by a distracted driver who failed to slow down for the light. The damage was significant, but what transpired became more important. The young, female driver was crying hysterically. She had just left a church where she attended an Al-Anon meeting. She was emotional even before the impact. Her “baby daddy” had died of a heroin overdose, and she was grieving. Fortunately, no one was seriously injured, and vehicles are repairable. Her brokenness was our main concern. The police were called and information was exchanged, but she was still inconsolable. I prayed with her and asked her to promise she would return to church and the meetings.
A 21-year-old should not be dealing with such preventable tragedy in her life. What are we doing to young people? Why are we so afraid to speak the truth about life, and the plan God intends for marriage and family?
I once read a profound statement: “Be the person you needed when you were younger.” It is so important to share TRUTH with children and make sure they understand the significance of a relationship with God the Creator. I explained the Feast of the Presentation of the Lord to my grandsons and the Jewish tradition of presenting a child to the Temple 40 days after birth. I shared the prophecy of Simeon and Anna, and I told them the feast is also called Candlemas. We made candles to have blessed at our weekend Mass. While we were making the candles I asked the 4-year-old why he thought they called it Candlemas, and he answered, “Because Jesus is the light of the world!” He certainly understood the importance of this beautiful feast and what it represents.
We will enter the Lenten Season on Ash Wednesday, Feb. 26. In a very personal way during this 40-day period, we will experience the sacrifice made for our salvation through the death and rising of Jesus Christ. Instead of offering up some sacrifice, I pray people of faith will take time to mentor a young person and let them know how faith has impacted your own life. Help a child understand how to know, love and serve God. You may never witness how your time of sharing will impact their life, but timing will be perfect – and God will know the value. He calls you for this purpose! May your Lent be a happy one! Amen!