Lord, in this holy season of prayer and song and laughter, we praise you for the great wonders you have sent us: for shining star and angel's song, for infant's cry in lowly manger. We praise you for the Word made flesh in a little Child. We behold his glory, and are bathed in its radiance.
Be with us as we sing the ironies of Christmas, the incomprehensible comprehended, the poetry made hard fact, the helpless Babe who cracks the world asunder. We kneel before you shepherds, innkeepers, wise men. Help us to rise bigger than we are. Amen.
- Author Unknown
"God said: This is the sign of the covenant that I am making between me and you and every living creature with you for all ages to come ..." - Genesis 9:12
An old-fashioned phone booth on the street corner. You don't see many of them any more! Mobile technology has made this once priceless convenience now obsolete. But is it really obsolete? If it were, why would it still be on the street corner? Not that I ever saw anyone in it, using it, or even looking at it. People just passed it by like it was a tree or a street lamp or a garbage can. They paid no attention to it, and probably didn't even realize it was there.
Maybe it was left there in case someone really desperately needed to make a phone call. Maybe it was left there to make a historical statement. Maybe it was left there because someone never got around to taking it down. Maybe it was left there so that someone could ponder why it was left there.
Or maybe it was left there in order to repeatedly bring to mind that God's covenant, like this phone booth, lasts forever.
Lord God, thank you for reminding me of your presence, even when I think I no longer have need for you. Amen.
"And they will say, 'Because they abandoned the covenant of the LORD, the God of their ancestors, which he had made with them when he brought them out of the land of Egypt, ...'" - Deuteronomy 29:24
The umbrella did its job and kept us dry as we arrived at our destination. As we tried to close it, though, each spoke broke one-by-one and poked into the fabric. Our trustworthy umbrella was now a mass of sticks and prongs. We planned to "just lose it somewhere." We spotted an umbrella stand so decided to leave it there.
A few hours later, we noticed that all the umbrellas in the stand had returned to their respective owners, except for a single dilapidated one. Each successive day, we noticed our deserted umbrella, isolated and awaiting its owner in the umbrella stand. It looked so sad and wretched, alone and abandoned.
Do we take care of each other like we took care of this umbrella? Will we leave someone alone and abandoned because they became old and weary? Do we just "lose it somewhere" when we look the other way instead of helping a person in need? What decision will you make?
"Why do you notice the splinter in your brother’s eye, but do not perceive the wooden beam in your own eye?" - Matthew 7:3
We're all perfect, and we all want everything just so and our way. But we know that's not the case, nor is it the reality. We're all flawed, and we all give-and-take to work side-by-side with our neighbor. That is the truer face of reality. Or is it?
Do we expect and accept the imperfections of others? Do we fault others when we are to blame? Do we harbor false accusations when defects arise? Do we see the splinter in our neighbor's eye when there's a beam in our own eye?
Heavenly Father, like the deficiency in these rosary beads, may my shortcomings be just as acceptable to You, our Blessed Mother, and my neighbor. Amen.
"Looking at little life moments with a spiritual eye."