A Sunday Meditation

I woke up late today.

Not just "Sort of late, but will get there in plenty of time."

Not really a "Late, but at least I can chug down some water and get there on time."

An actual, honest "Oh Lord, give me wings and catapult me from this house!" definition of late, complete with grit teeth as I drove ("Please Lord, don't let any of these other vehicles belong to members of my parish, because I know I'm sinning by breaking the speed limit!") and with the added bonus of "Phew! Made it into a parking spot, how's my hair? I look terrible - grrrr... oops! There's our Pastor! Smile, Toni!") as I pulled up on the emergency break and leaped out of my car (for me, that is a miracle. I don't leap on good days, even if I could!) I should have stayed home, but God pushed me onward, and as I caused no traffic fatalities (namely, my own) and as I wasn't so late that Mass hadn't started yet, I figured there was a good reason to be at church this morning.

Being late has its bonuses. You get to wave to people you know as you enter the Sanctuary. I'm new to Holy Rosary, so I don't know very many people yet. Of course, everyone will have spotted me, in my ("too late for church to iron") pants and blouse. They were probably drawn from their humble prayers as I walked down the side aisle towards my place in the choir,... as my boot heels made that horrible echoing tock tock tock sound on the hard tiles (oh, to be so girlishly thin that I float because of the air conditioner blowers - why, oh why did I eat that Hershey Kiss yesterday!)

I took my seat in the back of the choir (all the better to hear our organist's voice, as my low alto goes into spasms of pitch when I try to sing with the sopranos.) Reaching up, I realized that my hair, which I have been attempting to grow out, was doing little flippy-doos at the end, thanks to the collar of my blouse, and was probably sticking out from the sides of my head. I also realized that my black pants, a gauzy-thin material, were probably not doing a good job of hiding the fact that, of all the undergarments I own, I had to reach into my dresser and pull out a flaming hot pink pair of bikini briefs. No wonder people were staring as I walked. Or was it just my imagination. Lord, have mercy. You know I'm not awake, Father. Quick check... did I at least remember to put on a bra?! Yep. Whew! I should have stayed home, and just come to the 6 PM Mass. I did brush my teeth, but didn't take enough to rinse all the toothpaste out. I could feel a bit of it crunching on my back molars.

Once Mass started, I settled in. I managed to get through the prayers and songs, and our choir was fuller today than normal. The other women sang like meadowlarks (I probably sounded like a turkey), and it was a moving experience. But, on a sad note, doing the homily, the Father that I thought was a Father (the "Young one, who always gives those fantastic homilies") told us that his time as Deacon was at an end - he would be going over to Franciscan University. Wow. All this time, listening to his homily on Sundays, and I had no idea he was Brother Jonathan. He will become a Father on December 9, and let me tell you, this young man is off to a great start! So, God nudged me to get to Mass today because He knew it would be my last chance to hear one of Brother Jonathan's messages. I would have been saddened if I had missed it. Flippie-doo hair, wrinkled clothing, and crunchy toothpaste aside, everything has its purpose.

Brother Jonathan gave a wonderful lesson about Jesus and the loaves and fishes. It's one of my more favorite scriptures, and he pointed out how one disciple was the pessimist, saying that there would be no way to feed the multitude (it would cost 200 days wages just to give everyone a bite!), while one disciple was more willing and trusting, saying "Lord, there's a boy here with 2 fishes and 5 loaves of bread." He reminded us that we can't stop world hunger alone, but that we can do our part to help ease the pangs of hunger in the community around us. He also tied in how the bread of earth was needed, because we must eat and live to be able to have the bread of heaven. I think we will all miss him greatly. Most Sundays, our Organist and I sit on the side and quietly "amen" what he teaches us. The Holy Spirit truly moves in Brother Jonathan. (And yes, I will remember to bring the bag of canned goods tonight - I forgot to pick up it in my mad sweep from the house.)

It strikes me as a good lesson today. How many times am I so caught up in doing something that I forget to remember other's needs? In my rush to get from one place to another, do I pause to consider that someone out there just could use a lift to the store, or to work? While I fly through the grocery store, bent on getting everything in the cart, do I recall that I should pick up one more can than needed, because someone else would appreciate that food? (I am happy to say that I did remember to do this when I shopped this week!) If I'm in a hurry in traffic, might it be a good idea to consider than the older gentleman in front of me may be driving to visit his daughter or son, or to buy a loaf of bread, and his slow speed is because he is being cautious behind the wheel? There are many ways we can touch someone's life. The best way is to stop and consider the needs of others. Who are we to make ourselves so important that we can't be bothered with anyone else?

Granted, I'm as timid as a field mouse. I can be tenacious, but only when strongly motivated. At heart, I am shy. So walking up to strangers is a bit overwhelming for me at times. (Hence, weeks can go by before I learn who is who at church or at work. *cheesy smile* My bad.) But what about that boy with the loaves and fish? He didn't talk to Jesus. Maybe he was just as timid? One of the disciples pointed him out to our Lord, and all the boy did was offer what he had. I can do the same, just by bringing cans and clothing for the needy. We can all learn from this lesson. Two men stood before our Lord: one said "it can't be done", and the other said "it looks sort of impossible, but Lord I trust in you." Our works reflect our faith and trust in God. When things look impossible, God finds a way. He found a way to get me to Mass on time, and He found a way to feed thousands of people with just a bit of bread and some fish.

If I keep this line of thought up, I'll have to publish this to
Mt. Saint Caffiena. LOL

Anyway, I came home and the sun was hitting my front gardens just right. The pictures you see are of the summer flowers that have bloomed over the past couple of days. Jeff and I are going to rest today and tackle the living room carpets tomorrow before heading up to his appointment at the VA. I'll try to capture a picture of my favorite rock for you.

0 responded with...: