Reflection for Saturday, June 19, 1999: 11th week in Ordinary Time.

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Murphy, Brady
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Carpe Diem!||In today's world, it is increasingly more and more difficult to have time to do the things we want to do. Managing work and household responsibilities can become tremendously tedious and time consuming. Yet today's readings are not about responsibility, at least not in the worldly sense. Today's readings beckon us to live a little, to Seize the Day. That may sound great, but making it practical with all the other responsibilities we carry can be quite difficult. Here are three suggestions:|1. Pat yourself on the back. You deserve it. By reading this reflection, you are doing exactly what today's readings calls of you: to live simply in today. By taking time out to reflect, it's like you are appreciating the "splendor of the lilies of the field" that Jesus speaks of in Matthews Gospel. Congratulations on following this path and keep it up.|2. Offer it Up. The next burden you have, be it large or small, try offering it up again as a cross you must bear. For instance, yesterday while doing routine maintenance on the family car in the hot and humid Omaha sun, I was becoming more frustrated as I worked. This frustration boiled over when I stripped a lug nut on the tire I was removing. You would have thought that the greatest injustice known to humanity had occurred if you were in earshot of the scene (in this case a few blocks). I then realized that other frustrations--family, work stress--were affecting my ability to cope with an inanimate lug nut with a worn head. I then settled down and let go of my frustrations by offering them to God. That was all it took, for the rest of the maintenance went smoothly and I was in peace. As this story demonstrates, offering our burdens to God helps us bear them. Paul reminds us in the first reading that when we take on burdens, or when we are weak, we are strong.|3. Visit Nature. Don't make special plans to get out of town, or go to the park for a picnic. If you have the time, great--do those things. But if you're like most people and have little realistic free time, all you have to do is look out the nearest window to be reminded of God's grandeur. You could be riding a bus to work and all you see is a barren parking lot. Look closer and you might see a shoot of grass or a dandelion in full bloom shooting up bravely through a crack in the asphalt. God is there as God is everywhere around us. Take a brief moment--just 15 seconds--and you might be surprised at what you discover. It's easy to see the greatness of God in the simple things found in Nature.|Perhaps all it takes sometimes is a reminder of how to be in relation with God. Today's readings, then, are as strong now as the words were to the early Christians by calling us to the correct pathway.
University Ministry, Creighton University.
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