Saturday, August 8, 2015

Do you attribute successes to your effort and talent — or to God? - Daily Reflections August 8,2015

What happened to the disciples? One day, Jesus had sent them out on a mission to preach and heal. When they came back, they were so enthusiastic because they were able to perform many miracles and exorcise evil spirits. But now they were helpless to cure that boy. Why?
         We find only hints for an answer. When they came back from theirmission, they told Jesus proudly what “they” had accomplished. It seems they had forgotten that it was not “them” but Jesus who was the source of all they were able to do.
       The faith of the epileptic boy’s father is amazing and can be a model for us. Even though the disciples had failed, the father never doubted the power of Jesus. It was as if he said, “Only let me get at Jesus Himself and my problems will be solved.”
       Without God we can do nothing. The more we have faith in ourselves and forget that God works through us, the more we become helpless like the disciples whom Jesus had to scold as “men of little faith.”
      This danger is present today. The pursuit of achievement has become so strong. Of course, we should believe in ourselves, but such faith must always be rooted in a greater faith in God.
         Remember St. Thomas Aquinas. After finishing writing his Summa Theologica, that great work of his life, he brought the manuscript before the crucifix and asked the Lord in a shy voice, “Lord, did I do it well?”
       A last thought: Jesus had just come down from the mountain ofTransfiguration, still filled with the reassuring words of His Father — and immediately He is confronted again with a human need. He could have ignored the begging father and left, but He addressed the situation and helped.
       That is what we have to learn from Him. Christianity is not escapism, but when we come out from the presence of God, we have to face whatever human need confronts us. Fr. Rudy Horst, SVD
REFLECTION QUESTION: Do you attribute successes to your effort and talent — or to God?
Lord, thank You for opening my eyes again to one of my many weaknesses. Let me never forget that, without You, I cannot do anything. You alone are the source of all my successes.

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