Readings for Wednesday October 15, 2008
Memorial of Saint Teresa of Jesus, virgin and doctor of the Church
First Reading: Galatians 5:18-25
Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 1
Gospel: Luke 11:42-46
For those of you who are unaware today is Blog Action Day 08. This year's Blog Action Day theme is Poverty. Bloggers are invited to examine poverty from their own blog topics and perspectives, to look at it from the macro and micro, as a global condition and a local issue, and to bring their own ideas, views and opinions on the subject. So today we will look at the issue of poverty and how today's readings can speak to us about this subject.
A state of poverty is something that affects many Americans today. While the classification of poverty is up for debate as to what exactly defines a person as being in poverty, we can all agree that those in poverty typically struggle financially and with the things that they need. Many children and families today are greatly in need of help to meet their everyday needs. Many charitable organizations are becoming increasingly overwhelmed with the amount of people that need help with items such as clothing, food or money to pay bills. It is easy to assume that in these tough economic times that many more people, as well as organizations are struggling to make ends meat.
In today's first reading, Paul talks about the works of the flesh versus the fruits of the spirit. If we look at this list there are many works of the flesh that might prevent us from helping the fight against poverty. Some that immediately that stand out are idolatry, acts of selfishness, factions, etc. By giving in to these works of the flesh then we can do nothing to help our fellow brothers and sisters. However, if we call upon the Holy Spirit to guide us, then we can begin to make a difference. We see the fruits of the spirit can produce a good will and positive attitude that can make a difference. Think if more people gave in to love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, generosity, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control ... this world would be that much of a better place.
Now I am not asking for any of us to drop all that we have and dedicate ourselves to fighting poverty (unless that is what the Lord is calling you to), but I think that there are things that we each can do to make a difference. Ask yourself, what can I do today to make a difference? Perhaps it's volunteering at a local soup kitchen. Perhaps it's donating to a local charitable organization. Maybe it's giving the homeless man on the street that candybar you have lying around in your car. Perhaps it's praying for those who go without.
There are lots of ways that we can let the Holy Spirit work in us, let us all pray to Him and see how the Holy Spirit wants to work in our lives now, and let His glory shine to all.
Father above we thank you for the gift of this day. Send us your Spirit so that we can go out and serve you and others with all that we have. Lord, we pray for all those in poverty and that truly do without. We ask this all through Christ our Lord. Amen.