“By contemplating God, who became a child, radiating light from the humility of the crib, we can also become witnesses to humility, tenderness and goodness.”
Recently, I had a conversation with a gentleman who said he was intrigued by the work I do. At first I thought I might be talking to a potential supporter, but as I entered into the conversation, it was clear his intrigue was at a level that was deeper and not really related to my organizational goals…well, at least not our fundraising goals. "I just don’t know why it matters anymore," he said. "If I am good to my family, an upstanding businessman, nice to those on the street, why do I need the Church?" I listened to this lifelong Catholic and finally asked, "Well it seems like you are pretty sure of what you believe. What is it that I can help you with?" He looked down and said, "I’m not sure. I guess at 75 it doesn’t matter to me and yet at 40 it matters a lot to you. Why?" Trying not to be distracted by the fact that he made me older than I am, I said, "Well, I guess you have to ask yourself, ‘Who do I believe is in control? Am I in control or is God in control? I believe God is in control so I have to ask myself what does God want for my life. I believe the Church has a lot of those answers." He looked perplexed. "So you’re telling me, every time you make a decision, do something wrong, or face some situation, you think about God. I find that hard to believe." I smiled, "Absolutely not, but that’s why I need other Catholics, the Church, and you. Because when I don’t remember to bring God into my life and my decision making, there’s a reminder that I should and, more reassuringly, that I can."
This week as I was standing in a very long line for a Christmas ham, I watched all the people rush through the parking lot with their bags and determined faces as they finished up their Christmas errands and thought about that conversation. How do I help people think of God? I heard a beautiful thought from one bishop this Advent, that our invitation at Christmas, and really the entirety of our life, is to join God in "recreating the world." To welcome the "New Adam" and remind ourselves and each other who God is. Blessings on your Christmas and thank you for helping to recreate a world that points to the reason for the season.
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