Luke 10: 38-42 Burdened With Much Serving
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“Happiness is more than chasing pleasure.” This is the newly discovered finding from an MSNBC article posted March 6th, 2007. I hope NBC does not consider themselves the first to have discovered this life lesson. The Roman Catholic Church have been preaching and writing about this for over two thousand years! She follows faithfully the instruction she received from her Lord and his Apostles.
“Scientific research” (of course) suggests that it has nothing to do with income or experiences of pleasure. But rather, “(1) having a sense of engagement with others – whether love or friendships or social involvement; (2) influence at work; (3) A sense of meaning in life – living for a larger end.”
It is all true. Degree, career, girlfriend, car, travel, independence and money did not make me feel fulfilled at all to the degree I had expected. I think all who read this blog would be in total agreement. Love is not purchased; neither is happiness since happiness flows from love. The “pursuit of happiness” has nothing to do with reaching our goals in life or buying that thing you were always dreaming about. Happiness is deeper than that. It means living up to your values. It means being consistent in what you think, say and do. “Happiness has more to do with a way of being rather than a way of feeling.” And, not only does it make you happy, it makes you healthier, it makes you live longer!
“The things that people choose to do that are reflective of their values - that is what helps them be healthier, live longer and feel more contented. That is the “wow” of all of this!”
MSNBC’s three discoveries can best be summarized in the following Christian way: Living by giving; Making a difference; and Living for God.
When Christ is in the center of our life, there is no burden to hard to bear. Lord, do you not care that I have been left alone? Have you forgotten me? This is impossible with Christ. The Lord, in all fairness, should have responded, "Have you forgotten me?" What can easily happen is that I am anxious and worried about what is not necessary. What does the Lord expect from me? What does the Lord demand from me? The answer has always been that which was made from God and not man: My heart.
I cannot begin to tell you how many silly articles I have read in parish magazines that continue to portray the changing face of a parish priest. How he must be multi-media savvy, a great administrator, an incredible public speaker, team player, etc. And how he no longer has time to pray, to meditate or even prepare a good homily. In one particular article, the editor wrote that St. John Vianney was not a realistic model for priests today. I was very much tempted to respond, saying, “If priests are not praying, then they will be playing; and if they are playing, then we will all be paying!” Praying is the source of all giving, all loving and all living for God and neighbor.
Martha was a wonderful host. She was a marvelous cook. She was a neat freak and a detail-oriented woman. But she isn’t a saint for any of these reasons. She is a Saint because she did exactly what the Lord had told her (and us) to do. When she realized that she was over-burdened and under a lot of stress, she went to the Lord and the Lord reminded her (as he reminds us) to “Come to me all you who labor and are heavy burdened and I will give you rest.”
Sometimes we wait for something beautiful to happen to us, but Christ taught us not to wait for it but to give it.
Get some rest today and visit the Lord in the Eucharist. Receive him so that you can give him to others.