Restlessness and forgetfulness. I have been feeling more weary and been experiencing a slight dip in motivation. But I will still need to push on in enduring just 4 more months before I can find that pocket of rest before I make any plans to enter the workforce. I will push on because I know that Jesus is beside me all the way through, and in my failures and success, he will walk me through them all. For the side note, I extracted all the old palms at home and placed them in the collection box at the Church, at least that was productive!
The gospel reading says,“Jesus said to his disciples: “No one can serve two masters. He will either hate one and love the other, or be devoted to one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon.”Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink, or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds in the sky; they do not sow or reap, they gather nothing in the barns, yet your heavenly Father feeds them.
Are you not more than important than they? Can any of you by worrying add a single moment to your life-span? Why are you anxious about clothes? Learn from the way the wild flowers grow. They do not work or spin. But I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was clothed like one of them. If God so clothes the grass of the field, which grows today and is thrown into the oven tomorrow, will he not much more provide for you, O you of little faith? So do not worry and say,”What are we to eat?” or “What are we to drink?” or “What are we to wear?” All these things the pagans seek. Your heavenly Father knows that you need them all. But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be given you besides. Do not worry about tomorrow; tomorrow will take care of itself. Sufficient for a day is its own evil (Matthew 6:24-34).”
There is only one master in life – Jesus and He is at the centre of our lives. A simple analogy would be like a box that represents our life and that Jesus represents the rock. Then we add in pebbles, sand and water which goes in between in ensuring that our lives are fruitful and happy. But at times, we forget to put the rock first and we add in all the other things such as our worries. Nobody can escape worries as we are bound to fret over something or a situation. Jesus understands our needs and desires. He knows it all and simply tells us to trust in Him to provide.
I happened to glance at the television that had National Geographic on and this immediately reminded me of the gospel. The wildlife such as bears, beavers and nature all rely on the providence of God to survive. They rely heavily on the environment and their senses to forage for food and still they survive. Not all days are perfect as there are days where they will have little to eat, but the next day, they are able to find rich food sources. It is a marvel to see that God’s plan has sustained creation.
I have been trying to worry less and to pray more. It is definitely not easy as sometimes I cannot help feeling that situations are overwhelming. I say a small prayer in my heart, take a breather and carry on with the task. It is times like these that I know that my strength and willpower is not enough and that I need Jesus to guide me through. There is this scene in the movie “Bruce Almighty”,that I can relate to and I wish more people will take time to listen to others. There is one beautiful line in this scene where God explains that when we pray for something, he does not give to us what we want directly but he gives us opportunities for us to experience our prayer intention.
More so in relation to the scene above, during mass, I was kneeling in front of a family with a young special needs child. I could feel for the parents as they struggled to quieten the child who was yelling periodically during mass. Some of the congregation were shaking their heads in disbelief, but whenever the child dropped his toy, other church-goers and myself would pick the toy up. The parents would always politely utter a “Thank you” and I could feel the love that the parents had for this child and their patience was truly remarkable. The ministers of hospitality would always look out for the child too and it was heartwarming. I prayed for the child and the family that God will continue to bless them and for the child to understand that he has such a supportive family. It reminded me of the times when my parents would always look out for me when I was a young kid. I sometimes miss those days where life was simpler and less complex.
As we enter into the season of Lent, may we keep God close to our hearts and in our lives. Though we might have a full plate of things that requires our attention, may we always put Jesus first for He loves us and no matter our failures or successes in the eyes of the world, He knows that we have tried and He loves us even when we feel we are unloved, misunderstood or alone.
May we start the new week with a grateful heart in recalling how generous God’s love has been for us and we pray for the graces to be a channel of His love for ourselves and others. Amen!
Written By: Darren Chan Keng Leong