Reflection for Tuesday, June 1, 2004: 9th week in Ordinary Time.

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Dilly, Barbara
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Keeping our priorities straight is probably our biggest challenge. All the rest falls into place if we can discern what belongs to God and what belongs to us. We also need to keep a perspective on the difference between this world and the one for which we are ultimately designed. Those are big tasks for us. Our abilities to grasp the meaning of a thousand years of history seem impressive to us. But to God, so many years are just yesterday. I love that old hymn, "O God Our Help in Ages Past, Our Hope for Years to Come, Be thou our guide while troubles last, and our eternal home." The next verse begins with "A thousand ages in thy sight are like an evening gone."||The scriptures provide us with essential insights but they are sometimes difficult for us to grasp. The Psalms are often so galactic _ so cosmic. I'm thankful that our faith has inspired many hymn writers to reflect on the scriptures in their work. So many beautiful hymns reinforce scriptural themes. Another favorite of mine is "A Mighty Fortress is Our God, a bulwark never failing." Among my collection of books are old and new hymnals from several faith traditions. The hymns of our rich Christian heritage help me focus on my priorities by reminding me that we live in this world, but not for this world. |The words and lessons of Jesus further challenge us to clarify our priorities. Jesus also models for us the gentle courage of one who is not afraid to speak the truth to worldly power. All the structures and systems of governance that we humans create can be used to God's glory, but none are as long lasting and as powerful as God. Keeping our priorities straight is recognizing that there is more to our lives than we can comprehend or control. As we live in this world, our primary task is to grow in grace, not in power. But while our time here is a very small part of God's time, our lives are part of God's vast plan for eternity. It should fill us with joy and gladness to know that even though we pass quickly through this life, often feeling as though our toil is fruitless, God promises that our lives will play a bigger part in the everlasting glory of God. There are so many hymns that come to my mind, and I am sure to the readers of this reflection, on these promises for eternity. Singing them is one way we can shout for joy and gladness to the glory of God.
University Ministry, Creighton University.
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