The disciples had forgotten to bring bread, and they had only one loaf with them in the boat. Jesus enjoined them, “Watch out, guard against the leaven of the Pharisees and the leaven of Herod…Do you not yet understand or comprehend?”
I have been searching for the right alarm clock; that is, an alarm that is gentle to the ear and sweet to the mind. I’ve been searching and searching and have yet to find one! However, just recently, I thought I found the perfect alarm. It’s on my blackberry cell phone and its name is interesting. It’s called, “Evolving dream.”
It should be called, “Evolving nightmare!”
This morning, during my homily, I shared the actual alarm with the congregation (the kids from school were there too!). Can I describe it in words? I will try. The alarm starts off like no other alarm I know of: it starts off gentle. Then, little by little, the volume begins to go up. The actual alarm sounds like chimes. It is gentle, open, and breezy – it’s beautiful! But as the volume increases, one high pitched piercing note begins to dominate and overpower all the gentle chimes and melodies. In the end, the alarm sounds similar to a fire alarm! I couldn’t believe it. I hated it!
Responsibility. While reading today’s Gospel passage, I began to wonder if the Apostles really forgot the bread or if they did not bother to bring the bread? You know…did they really forget to bring the bread or were they starting to get a little too comfortable with having Jesus around. Don’t we all feel a little bit better when we have a safety net below us? Don’t we all worry a little less when we have a guaranteed job or a nice fat bank account? Well, maybe the Apostles were saying to themselves, “Don’t worry about the bread; after all, we have Jesus with us!” But the Lord reminds his followers, “If you wish to come after me, then pick up your cross and follow me!” And, “If they persecuted me, then they will persecute you.” God does not replace us. He does not absorb us either. He respects us by sending us!
In some ways, life is like a clock and Christ is like the alarm. He wakes us up, and that’s a very good thing. We could all use a little more waking up! Jesus is as gentle as a lamb and as wild as a lion! Granted, He is meek and humble of heart but He is also a very straight shooter. He knows us and we could get to know him a little bit more. He knows that most of us will never wake up with just a gentle, comfortable life, so what does he do? He sounds the alarm. It takes some alarming realities to get us up and moving.
You could almost say that life is like an “Evolving Reality!
We need gentle people in our lives. We need tough people too. We love those who love us. But we also need those who push us too. It’s good to be with those who are happy-go-lucky. It’s good to be with those who are demanding too.
Life is a blessing. Life is a privilege. The alarms in our lives remind us not to make a mockery out of it! Live life to the full. Live it right. Yesterday I celebrated a funeral Mass for a wonderful young mother and wife. Why did this wonderful woman have to die and go home to the Father’s house? I thought about it for a while and it dawned on me for the very first time: It’s for the same reason why a man marries a woman and brings her to his home; why the gardener picks the most beautiful flowers and brings them into his Master’s home. Why did this wonderful woman have to die? She deserved it, and for all the right reasons!
P.S. Happy Valentine's Day!!!