2 Corinthians 12:7-10
My Beloved, man whom God created in infinite love and fashioned in His own image and likeness, gave him one of His greatest gifts, free will. God knew perfectly well that in doing so He risked the very real possibility of man choosing to turn away from Him and His infinite love. God took that chance anyway, for there is no greater joy than when man freely turns to God and chooses to acknowledge that love and to return that love completely with his entire being.
From the very beginning God named man rightly, "This set of rebels." Like all spoiled children we resist our Father God constantly. Instead of yielding to His love, instead of surrendering joyfully to His will, instead of actively seeking His will in all things and experiencing His perfect joy and peace, we prefer to do things our way. We choose to do what is evil, we choose self-indulgence, we choose to satisfy the desires of the flesh instead of raising our entire being to God.
God our Father has sent prophet after prophet each one a foreshadow of You who are the greatest of all the prophets and this He did in order to coax His children to come back to Him. To return to the safety of His love, to enjoy His providence and to shelter in His protection.
Thank You Father for Jesus Your Beloved Son and our Redeemer. Thank You Jesus for the gift of Your Holy Spirit who is constantly renewing and sanctifying those who come back to You.
My Beloved, my Life, my Hope - the world is full of people too numerous to count who are oppressed, crushed, forgotten, trampled on, ignored, overlooked and considered worthless. Who will these turn to Lord except to You? Who will hear their cry for justice except You? Who will vindicate them, to whom will they go for redress? Who will rescue them except You? Their cries rise up to You day and night pleading for mercy, pleading that the crushing weight of oppression may be lifted from them, that the foot that bears them down might be thrown off. In the end, You will hear, You will answer. You hear every sigh, You gather every tear and in the end You will avenge those who have taken advantage of the little ones whom You love so passionately.
My Beloved, if we understood that our strength lies in our weakness because then we would depend on You for everything. Knowing we are nothing and have nothing apart from You, we would turn to You for Your help and Your strength. We would lean on You and draw from the sap that runs from You. We would permit ourselves to be rooted in You. We could then boast of true strength for we would boast of Your strength, Your grace, and Your merits. My Love, I know and You know how much I like praise and how easy it can be to forget that every gift and charism is given by You in order to build Your body. They are not given to me to be boastful nor should I succumb to flattery and become conceited.
Let me always see myself as I truly am, Your little nothing but being grafted on to You I am all things. Of myself I am nothing, in You I am everything.
Beloved, the narrow mind can be stifling and suffocating. It will permit no other view as true other than its own. The narrow mind is closed and old, outdated ideas render the mind stagnant and stale. It becomes as dead as the Dead Sea for it is incapable of life. The narrower one's view becomes, the more hostile one is to change or renewal - even when this change is necessary for life and for growth. How often we judge people by what we knew eons ago and we judge them by the past leaving them no room in our judgement for change. They are constricted and constrained by the error of our uncompromising stand in our perception based on old history.
This is what You experienced when You returned to Your home town. The people were astounded by Your wisdom and at the reports they had heard of the signs and wonders You had performed all over the country, but they were not willing to get rid of the mold in which they had cast You. They were the losers for You can do nothing with a closed mind that refuses to receive what You are always so willing to give.
There are many in this day who have exactly the same experience that You did. People who can be a catalyst for good are rejected because they come from a background or country or village or whatever that is deemed unsuitable. How much of great value is lost because we have been too prejudiced and narrow in our thinking. We have lacked the wisdom to see potential and thus have denied the possibility of enjoying its fruit.