Use It or Lose It
By Evelyn Richardson of Nauvoo, IL, USA
“…so I was afraid, and I went and hid your talent in the ground. Here you have what is yours.” —Matthew 25:25 NRSV
This is the day! “For what?” you might ask. “It’s just another day.” I know I have a whole new day to use any way I choose. Let’s see…shall I crawl back into bed for another hour or two of sleep, or should I get up and be about the Lord’s business?
Should I wallow in my own self pity or count my many blessings? Should I eat until I’m full or make a hot dish for a shut-in? Should I let jealousy, envy, pride, and prejudice rule my day or should I look for ways to offer joy, hope, love, and peace to those I meet?
I can come up with all the usual excuses: “I’m too old; I’m too young; I don’t have time; I don’t have enough money. That’s not my job; it takes a strong person for that job; I can do it later”…on and on it goes, and so does the day. And then it’s gone—along with the opportunity to respond. I have buried my day’s talent.
To love the Lord is to serve the Lord. To serve the Lord is to serve those in need. Shall I make that phone call to a lonely person? Send that card or note to a homebound person? Visit a neighbor with whom I can share Christ? The choice is mine. What am I waiting for?
Prayer for Peace
Thank you, God, for getting my attention so I can get busy. What would you like me to do? I’m listening.
Spiritual Practice: Making Responsible Choices
Prayerfully seek God’s guidance in your choices. The practice of discernment invites us to orient our lives toward God and God’s vision for us and creation. Begin by reviewing the responsibilities and opportunities in the day before you. Take these choices into prayer, asking God for wisdom and insight about what matters most.
Offer yourself to God using the prayer of Teresa of Avila: “God, what do you want of me today?” Sit prayerfully with this question as you review the day again. Be aware of images, thoughts, names, or actions that come to you. Ask for a blessing to live this day responsibly and compassionately in the Spirit of Christ.
Today, God, I will begin peace with the very next action I take.