Friday, January 6, 2017

Humble and loving service...

"We could, for example, keep ourselves from examining our neighbor's conscience..."
St. Andre Bessette, as quoted in "Living With Christ"

I love this guy.  Brother Andre Bessette was a humble doorman at a college in Montreal. From very humble beginnings, he served God faithfully in simple and concrete ways, visiting the sick and opening the door for visitors. He shows us that any job or ministry is holy if done for the glory of God and with great love. No matter what our job, the way we do what we do makes it holy, not how far up the ladder we climb or how big our name is on the marquee. My favorite story about St. Andre is this: Whenever there was a knock on the door he would hurry to open it, saying, "I'm coming Lord!" It seemed, to him, each visitor was Jesus, himself. Let's think about that this wintery Friday.  Each person we encounter is Jesus and how hospitable are we? Are we hurrying to answer the door? Are we doing our most mundane tasks with love and for the glory of God? And, as St. Andre suggests, the only conscience we need to examine is our own, right? St. Andre, pray for us! Love, heidi

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

What are we looking for?

"Jesus turned and saw them following him and said to them, "What are you looking for?"
John 1:38

That one sentence could be the title of a whole retreat right there! The two men had heard about Jesus and they were intrigued about what they'd heard. They followed him. Jesus had an aura that attracted people to him. And, most importantly, people have a need for a leader--like a shepherd for sheep. We see this all the time throughout history. People have an innate need to follow someone and Jesus was (and still is!) a wonderful Someone to follow.  Jesus asks us each day "What are you looking for?" And it is a wonderful question to pray with and jot down honest answers.  Are we looking for security, success, control? Jesus may not be the answer for us there.  Are we looking for comfort, sunshine and only gentle breezes? That may be closer, but Jesus doesn't promise us that kind of life.  Jesus shows us the fullness of life, death and resurrection. There it is.  The trinity of our human experience in three words.  And, as Fr. Richard Rohr frequently points out, nature has been showing us this continuously for millions of years.  Jesus showed us in his human form what nature has always shown us. We live, we die and we live again.  So, what ARE we looking for? Well, at this point, since I am alive, I am looking to Jesus to show me how to live that life in a more loving, compassionate way; loving others, thus loving God.  What are YOU looking for? Let's pray with that question. Love, heidi

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Let it go...

"Beloved, we are God's children now, whatever we shall be has not yet been revealed."
1 John 3:2

Happy New Year! I've discerned my little "theme" for 2017 is "Let it go," (please don't sing the song from "Frozen")! I see it as a call to let go of a lot of things...stuff, certainly, as that is a recurring theme for me every year, but this year I feel called to let go of more. I feel called to let go of plans for the future--only God holds my future. Me, making plans, just distracts me from what God may have in mind for me. So, no more counting Mondays until retirement! And, as wise daughter Jeni pointed out one time, my clients deserve someone working for them who isn't counting Mondays!  I feel I need to let go of fear and hold on to hope, especially as our government changes. I feel I need to let go of what may hold me back in loving others fully and compassionately. Some of that may be an odd fear of rejection, but also, just plain laziness.  So, while I don't like to do New Year's resolutions, per say, I do like to narrow down my focus for doing better through the new year.  And this year, it is to Let it go...(oh no, there's that song again!)  Love, heidi