Reflection for Saturday, November 20, 2004: 33rd week in Ordinary Time.

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Shirley, Nancy
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The readings today require some thoughtful consideration. The first reading and the gospel focused our attention to resurrection and caused me to think at great length about what they meant and specifically what they meant to me. The responsorial psalm appeared straight forward in comforting us that we are not alone.|I could immediately relate to the idea of God as my rock and my shield. It is easy and common for me to take much comfort in such ideas. I have only to stop and reflect on any difficult time in my life and I know I was never alone. A few years ago when I was experiencing much turmoil in my professional life and much pain, my grown children and I often discussed what was happening. Although I was unsure of my future and what choices I should be making, one thing was perfectly clear to me, I was not alone; whatever the future held, it was part of a divine plan. As I explained to them many times, God had never deserted me before in my life, not through deaths and personal losses or professional challenges. I had no reason to doubt that this time would be any different; He was, indeed, my shield, my strength, the foundation of my very being. A unique sculpture in a local "healing garden" provided even more comfort as I literally laid my head in the lap of Christ and felt His healing presence. The wonderful opportunities and experiences since that time have again reinforced my belief that God is always there.|I believe that the other readings move our focus from the present and the very real comfort that we have in the Lord to the future and the extraordinary journey that awaits us. In reading the gospel and searching for its meaning with what resurrection would hold, I ran across a quote from a Baptist minister (Dr. Criswell) who when asked if we would know each other when we get to heaven, responded that we won't really know each other UNTIL we get to heaven. I had been distressed at my first reading of the gospel that somehow my marriage was not important. I know that my husband is an essential companion for the journey and now realize that Jesus was not putting down our relationships on earth but asking us to look beyond to the marvels that will eventually be ours. My husband and I will continue to be side-by-side as we take this journey with our feet sometimes stuck in the mud on earth. The times when we are looking together at the purpose of the journey and beyond our own needs are the times when our relationship is at its finest and most fulfilling. For it is in remembering that we are children of God, that we are like angels who will rise and truly know each other and God as our final reward.
University Ministry, Creighton University.
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