Gift: Understanding – With the gift of understanding, we comprehend how we need to live as a follower of Jesus Christ. A person with understanding is not confused by all the conflicting messages in our culture about the right way to live.
Reading: He answered, “Not all can accept [this] word, but only those to whom that is granted. Some are incapable of marriage because they were born so; some, because they were made so by others; some, because they have renounced marriage for the sake of the kingdom of heaven. Whoever can accept this ought to accept it.” (Matthew 19:12)
Observation: The fact that I have been married now for over 13 years to a beautiful woman who is my rock of faith and we have four children, makes me uniquely disqualified to discuss this verse of scripture. However, I imagine, as my title says, that those young men and women who are called to live their lives in celibacy for the sake of the kingdom would be challenged at every turn, but would find their choice to be very liberating, because everyone they met would know that they had decided to reject this world’s view and accept God’s vision for their lives. It’s not that I don’t know that I accepted God’s vision for my life, and I try to do it daily, but to consecrate your life to the church and accept the celibate life, as well as receiving the sacrament of holy orders, must be an extremely fulfilling decision, if you know that you are called to it.
Personification: Love I hope that I can display a small part of the love that our priests and religious brothers and sisters show in their consecration of their lives to the church. It helps me to realize that others have made this gift of their lives for our faith. No matter what I feel like I must give up today for my faith, it is nothing compared to the gift that our brothers and sisters, who have answered the call to be a priest or religious brother or sister, have made.
Prayer: Lord, help me to make a gift of my life by loving everyone that I meet today, just as you love me. I ask this, as always, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit. Amen.