Relationships, or How being challenged makes me more me

Athirst is my soul for the living God.

This past Sunday was Good Shepard Sunday, and the Gospel and readings focused on relationships and the importance of the Holy Spirit in influencing those relationships.

In the first reading, Peter explains how everything the Church will be doing from now on, every good deed, will be done because of Christ, through Christ.  Then we are told that we are beloved children of God who are needed to bring Christ into the world so that the world will know us and because of that they  will follow Christ. Finally, Jesus explains how we are to be as Christians.  We are to lay down our lives for everyone.

I began thinking about parenting, mothering, and relationships.  Remember your mother saying: “If you don’t have anything nice to say, say nothing.”  Well, the reading adds a layer to that telling us all: if you can’t do anything nice how can you call yourself Christian?  Think about relationships.  Aren’t they emotional/spiritual dances we have with others?  Every action has a reaction.  Aren’t good deeds moving us forward, wrongful ones moving backward?

The second reading is our relational triangle:  alovecard
It draws us deeper into the relationship dance, the Great Commandment Triangle.  How we relate to others is a mirror into how we feel about ourselves and by connection how we feel about God.  This reading is important. “Beloved, we are God’s children now; what we shall be has not yet been revealed.  We do know that when it is revealed we shall be like him, for we shall see him as he is.”

Not only are we examining relationships, but also our calling; which is a response to our relationship with God. None of us will fully known who we are until we have revealed what it is that we are called to do.  Think about that for a moment.  When you were in college you had one sense of who were going to be, you “just knew”.  But it was amorphous, it changed with the next class or next whim.  As you were called to motherhood things became clearer but only slightly.  It wasn’t until you were challenged that who you are coming into focus.  And that challenge is always in relation with someone else.  So, you are being called, as in the first reading, to look at everything you do as if you were doing it for Christ.  Through the second reading, you see that the more you do as for Christ.  The more you do according to your calling. The more you do while loving God, your neighbour and yourself with your whole mind soul and heart.  The more you find the you are becomeing more YOU.

Finally, Christ tells us that when we have achieved all that, it will be easy to lay down our life.  Think about that.  How often have we done something for someone without every a thought about ourselves, just because that friend, that fellow mom, really needed something, right now.

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Is a spiritual director working helping moms find God in the everyday. She has been a spiritual director since 1998: worked as a Director of Religious Education for Holy Cross Parish(2000-2005), was Director of Project Rachel, a healing ministry for Post Abortive women(1999-2000). Patty worked a social worker for Catholic Social Services (1988 - 1995) Then studied for spiritual direction at the Dominican Center of Religious Studies, DeWitt Michigan

She is married 20 years and has four children

She has a BS/BA in social work from Aquinas College, CSD Certified Spiritual Director

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