These words are inspired by my pastor’s homily last Sunday. They are a combination of his thoughts and my reflections on the Gospel reading (Mark 6:7-13).
The popularity of reality TV shows is still going strong. The Apprentice. The Bachelor. Wife Swap. Jon and Kate Plus Eight. The Amazing Race. And so many more.
Survivor started it all. And even if you’ve never seen these shows, you probably know the general premise. They are all about strong vs. weak. Contestants are out to get the weakest links voted off, so in the end, one person remains triumphant. Everyone is looking out for themselves, for #1. It is probably the worst portrayal of human relationships out there. It is the worst depiction of the Me generation: I will do whatever it takes to win. I am only looking out for my interests. And I will do anything possible to you to see that I come out on top.
It is completely opposite of how we are called to act, as Christians, as humans. We are called to be respectful and helpful to one another. And to uphold each other’s dignity. Husbands and wives. Parents and children. Friends and neighbors. As Christians, as humans, we are called to help each other and support each other. We simply need each other! It is meant to be mutual and reciprocal and completely unlike reality TV.
As much as we need each other, we need God even more. When I stop and think about it, my need for God is SO great! He provides for me. He sustains me. He forgives me. He protects me. He saves me. He loves me.
Everyday I need Him. And in that need, I seek Him, and I find Him. He is always there for me.
This need for others and for God is something that I have known about, and lived out, since I was a little girl—being part of a family, having friends, learning about God, Jesus, Mary and all aspects of my faith …
The part of Father’s homily that I had not thought about much is how God needs me (and you), too.
Like any human relationship, our relationship with God is mutual, too. We definitely need Him. But He also needs us. Our all-knowing, all-powerful and all-loving God has chosen to enter into relationship with His children, and chosen to depend upon humans throughout history to help Him reveal His love to the world.
He needed Mary to say “yes” to receiving Him in her womb, so that He could come to Earth as a baby. As a child and young teenager, He needed St. Joseph to guide Him and work alongside Him. Jesus needed John the Baptist to baptize Him. He needed the boy with five loaves and two fish so that He could perform a miracle. Jesus needed Simon of Cyrene to help Him carry the cross, because His human body was too exhausted to go any further alone. He needed Joseph of Arimathea to find a place where He could be buried properly. He needed His apostles to go forth, two by two, to drive out demons and anoint the sick with oil. He needs you and He needs me to be His hands and feet in this world that is suffering and hurting so deeply.
As St. Teresa of Avila wrote, “Christ has no body now on earth but yours, no hands but yours, no feet but yours, yours are the eyes through which Christ’s compassion is to look out to the earth, yours are the feet by which He is to go about doing good and yours are the hands by which He is to bless us now.”
Oh, Lord, thank you for loving me so much! May I always know just how much I need You. Through the grace of Your Holy Eucharist, may I be sustained throughout this week, so that I may do what you need me to do. Help me to bring You to my little corner of the world—to my family, my friends, my neighbors. Give me the strength to do Your will in all things. Amen.