Your word is a lamp for my feet and a light for my path. (Psalm 119)
Genesis 4, 1-15, 25
Just because I offer gifts of talent, time or treasure does not mean they will be received either by God or by others. Like Cain, I too present gifts that are rejected for no apparent reason, while others’ gifts are accepted and applauded. And like Cain, God extends to me as well, the underlying gift of mercy that is available in all circumstances, no matter how unfair or how maddening. If Cain had faithfully turned to the mercy of God, he would have discovered God’s ‘pruning’ of his casual relationship with sin. “Sin is lurking at the door; its desire is for you, but you must master it,” God told him, and invited him to love his brother beyond envy and jealousy. So too when mere mortals reject the gifts I offer at work, at church, in my community or at home, God invites me to enter more fully into his nature, his Spirit, of love and mercy and allow Him to prune sin of many kinds from my heart. When my gifts are rejected, will I like Cain allow frustration and envy to seek revenge or retaliation, or will I continue to cultivate the gifts of my life in order to offer them again to others and ultimately to God? Christ Jesus, when my gifts are rejected, teach me more about mercy.
Giving praise is the sacrifice that honours me, and I will surely save all who obey me. (Psalm 50:23)
The man [or woman] of the true religious tradition understands two things: liberty and obedience. The first means knowing what you really want. The second means knowing what you really trust.
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Soli ad gloriam Dei
Beverly Illauq lives in Kemptville, Ontario, where she greets each morning by seeking the Gospel Mystery of the Day - the Word of the Lord for direct and practical application to the specific challenges & joys of the day.