Wednesday, December 2, 2015

“The most precious thing we have to give is our time.”

Our actions have a tongue of their own; they have an eloquence of their own, even when the tongue is silent. For deeds prove the lover more than words.  - St. Cyril of Jerusalem: (313 – 386: Cyril was declared a Doctor of the Church by Pope Leo XIII)
Gospel Text: (Mt 15:29-37)
At that time:
Jesus walked by the Sea of Galilee,
went up on the mountain, and sat down there.
Great crowds came to him,
having with them the lame, the blind, the deformed, the mute,
and many others.
They placed them at his feet, and he cured them.
The crowds were amazed when they saw the mute speaking,
the deformed made whole,
the lame walking,
and the blind able to see,
and they glorified the God of Israel.

Jesus summoned his disciples and said,
“My heart is moved with pity for the crowd,
for they have been with me now for three days
and have nothing to eat.
I do not want to send them away hungry,
for fear they may collapse on the way.”
The disciples said to him,
“Where could we ever get enough bread in this deserted place
to satisfy such a crowd?”
Jesus said to them, “How many loaves do you have?”
“Seven,” they replied, “and a few fish.”
He ordered the crowd to sit down on the ground.
Then he took the seven loaves and the fish,
gave thanks, broke the loaves,
and gave them to the disciples, who in turn gave them to the crowds.
They all ate and were satisfied.
They picked up the fragments left over–seven baskets full.
This gospel reminds me of the folk tale, “Stone Soup”.  Although there is no miracle in the story, in the end, it may be very much what Jesus, through today’s gospel, meant to teach us. Villagers in the story were starving, and a new-comer suggested that they boil water in a large pot and add a stone; a very good soup could be made.  Upon tasting it, it was determined that it might be a little better if they could only find some potatoes…some were found.  More tasting ensued… maybe add a few onions…some cabbage…and finally, some meat was found.  When everyone gave what little they had, they had a large and nourishing meal. “They all ate and were satisfied,” to quote today’s gospel. 

Was Jesus teaching the crowd (and now us) that we already have been provided for If we only care, and love one another enough to share?  If we learn this, we will have more than enough to satisfy us.  Sometimes, we have to cooperate with God and be patient.  A miracle will occur.  The Lord will come.  Blessed are those who are prepared to meet Him.               

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