We Gather in Faith
Teaching and commentary from our pastor, Bishop Francis Christian.
My first grade teacher, Sr. Nathaniel, taught us that if
someone made a deathbed confession or “perfect” act of
contrition, that person would go to heaven. That didn’t
seem fair but it was attractive. I could do whatever I want
in life, go to confession right before I die or pray the Act
of Contrition, and still go to heaven. Of course I didn’t
consider that we never know when we’ll die and more
importantly that the point of life in faith is to live Jesus,
seek the Lord, and live God’s ways throughout our lives.
Those workers, who began work in the morning,
laboring under the hot sun all day, felt entitled to more
money than those who came at day’s end. When that did
not happen, they felt cheated. Maybe they did envy the
owner’s generosity. They missed the point. The owner
promised the usual daily wage to all, whenever they
started working. Our gracious and merciful God promises
eternal life to all who enter into relationship with God,
whenever we do so and even after we fall. This is pure
gift. We are not entitled to it. We can be blinded by
God’s generosity to those we think undeserving. Envy
blinds us to God’s nearness at all times and keeps us from
gratitude for such generous mercy.
God’s justice looks more like human mercy. We can
cry, “Unfair!” In the end, I’m glad that God’s ways are
not my ways. Would that mine were more like God’s.
The message is to conduct ourselves in a way worthy of
the gospel we have received no matter when we receive it
or how often we fall. Seek the Lord and our union with
Christ will be clear.
Taken from “Living the Word”, by Laurie Brink, O.P. &
Paul A. Colloton, O.S.F.S.