Monday, August 5, 2013

The more we trust, the more reasonable we find it to trust.

'In all your affairs lean solely on God's Providence, by means of which alone your plans can succeed. Meanwhile, on your part work on in quiet co-operation with Him, and then rest satisfied that if you have trusted entirely to Him you will always obtain such a measure of success as is most profitable for you, whether it seems so or not to your own individual judgment.' - St. Francis de Sales

Gospel Text: (MT 14:13-21)
When Jesus heard of the death of John the Baptist,
he withdrew in a boat to a deserted place by himself.
The crowds heard of this and followed him on foot from their towns.
When he disembarked and saw the vast crowd,
his heart was moved with pity for them, and he cured their sick.
When it was evening, the disciples approached him and said,
“This is a deserted place and it is already late;
dismiss the crowds so that they can go to the villages
and buy food for themselves.”
He said to them, “There is no need for them to go away;
give them some food yourselves.”
But they said to him,
“Five loaves and two fish are all we have here.”
Then he said, “Bring them here to me,”
and he ordered the crowds to sit down on the grass.
Taking the five loaves and the two fish, and looking up to heaven,
he said the blessing, broke the loaves,
and gave them to the disciples,
who in turn gave them to the crowds.
They all ate and were satisfied,
and they picked up the fragments left over–
twelve wicker baskets full.
Those who ate were about five thousand men,
not counting women and children.

St. Matthew's account of the multiplication of the loaves and fishes (Matthew 14:13-21) teaches us to trust in the providence of God. This is not an example of the "prosperity Gospel," a false teaching widely promoted today which holds that God will give material rewards and wealth to those who trust in him. Instead, this passage teaches us that God will give us what we need - even if it isn't fully what we want - and that we should always trust in him.

An essential element of this providence, however, is our cooperation. The apostles had five loaves and two fish. Hardly enough to feed a multitude numbering in the thousands. But they offered what they had, and Jesus did the rest.

Notice that the apostles didn't hold anything in reserve for themselves. They gave everything to the Lord, as he asked. There was no provision for a personal safety net; everything was entrusted to God.

As a result of this generosity, Jesus works a great miracle. He will work miracles in our lives as well, but we must do what the apostles did: offer him the gift of ourselves, whole and entire, without holding anything back. If we do so, we can have confidence that the Lord will multiply what we offer and produce abundant fruit in our souls.

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