Reflection for Thursday, May 24, 2018: 7th Week of Ordinary Time.

dc.contributor.authorBrock, Maryen_US
dc.contributor.cuauthorBrock, Mary L.en_US IIen_US Timeen_US 7en_US
dc.description.abstractThis spring season brings warm and sunny days, here in North America.  The sun sets much later in the evening creating more time to enjoy being outside.  In recent years I have developed a love of working in my yard on landscaping projects.  As I am self-taught, I have delighted in some successes and learned from some plantings that did not go according to plan.  My experience out in the yard has helped me develop an appreciation for breaking tasks down into smaller, manageable components.  And I have also come to accept imperfection while I continue to see potential.|Both readings today, the warning to the rich from James and Jesus speaking to the temptations of sin in the Gospel from Mark, are quite challenging to me.  As I started to pray with these readings I found myself feeling overwhelmed and confused.  And suddenly in a very simple way I realized that is how I felt when I first started working on my yard.  Once I used lessons from my time doing yard work, I could begin to hear God's voice in the readings.  Just as I do when I work on my landscaping, I need to approach the readings with an openness and with a willingness to focus on one aspect at a time.|My initial reaction to the first reading from James is fear and a bit of panic.  I wonder if I have been too focused on material wealth.  When have I not treated someone with respect for my own benefit?   Have I run out of time?  I sit with that anxiety and calmly make room for God's voice.  As I sort through my attachments I can learn from the times I was more focused on status than on being a true servant.  I can also appreciate the times I was present to others.  Moving away from the all or nothing thinking helps open my heart to what God wants me to hear. |The words of Jesus in the Gospel from Mark provide extreme examples of how to respond to my own sinfulness.  Again, I engage a patient approach and realize that Jesus is using these dramatic metaphors to make sure I am hearing the importance of the message.  Being uncomfortable is a good thing as it helps me take a realistic view of my life.  We are all sinners.  It is what I learn from those sins, how I invite God's help, how I respond to those who are vulnerable that matters.|Feeling God's presence is such a gift when I am outside in my yard.  My gratitude is overwhelming as I continue to pray with and be challenged by today's readings.  As I dig and plant and toil in my yard, I will be asking God to help me abandon my preoccupations and to help me be receptive to his presence.  The refrain from today's responsorial psalm encourages me:  Blessed are the poor in spirit; the Kingdom of heaven is theirs!en_US
dc.identifier.otherLectionary Number: 344en_US
dc.program.unitNegotiation and Conflict Resolution Programen_US
dc.publisherUniversity Ministry, Creighton University.en_US
dc.publisher.locationOmaha, Nebraska, United Statesen_US
dc.rightsThese reflections may not be sold or used commercially without permission. Personal or parish use is permitted.en_US
dc.rights.holderUniversity Ministry, Creighton University.en_US
dc.subject.local1James 5:1-6en_US
dc.subject.local2Psalms 49:14-15ab, 15cd-16, 17-18, 19-20en_US
dc.subject.local4Mark 9:41-50en_US
dc.titleReflection for Thursday, May 24, 2018: 7th Week of Ordinary Time.en_US
dc.title.seriesDaily Reflections (Meditations) on the Scriptures from the Roman Catholic Lectionary.en_US
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