Friday, August 10, 2012

A Habit of Love: Whom do you wear?

Matthew 16:13-20

I love to dress up.

I don't have a particular designer that I'm devoted to but if I find an article of clothing that I love I must have it. No matter the price. I have a certain style and my clothes display my personality even my mood that particular day. Some say the clothes make the man (in my case, woman). I guess my clothes say I am a relaxed person, sometimes a bit adventurous, other times calm and straightforward. Somedays my clothes say, "Hey, look at me," and other days my clothes say, "Too tired to look at myself." What you wear can sometimes indicate what type of person you are on any given day.

In today's gospel, Jesus askes His apostles,

"Who do you say that I am?"

This evening, I spent time with two Sisters of the Servants of the Lord and Virgin MatarĂ¡. Their mission is to bring Christ to everyone, through everything. Even a simple appearance at a baseball game should bring evangelization because their mere presence should remind us all of the presence of Christ in our midst. For the women and men who've been called to cloth themselves for the Lord, it is very easy for all to see that they have a special relationship with God. But what is my habit? How do people know whether I have a special relationship with God?

St. Paul famously answers that when he suggest we put on love.

Wear Love in and out, making sure others see Love, not me. Love using me to spread, to nurture, to feed and cloth, to hug and speak kind words, to pray and pray for, to wipe away tears and dance for joy, to receive and be received, to forgive effortlessly and embrace with unending mercy.

Dress myself in His love, Who is Love. Nothing forceful, nothing glitzy. Simple yet glorious Love.

I guess we can all ask ourselves the following; if people encounter me, will my actions tell them who Jesus is? Can they see His light, or have I lost some credibility through how I behave or what I fail to do? Who do I say Jesus is? How do I say it? How do I demonstrate to others that Jesus is my Lord and Savior and the only begotten Son of God?

What is your habit? Does it say who Jesus is to you? Can others see your relationship with Him without a word exchanged? Who we say Jesus is, and how we say it, is important. He gave us the task of spreading His story, His love so that the world can come to know Him. He needs us to put on Love.

We just need people to see Jesus in us. He takes care of the rest.

God, You know how imperfect I am. My heart has good intentions, but my actions, sadly, fall short. I want to glorify myself when I should be looking for ways to glorify You. I want others to see me, when I should show them You through my actions and words. I wish for the courage to hand my life over to You, yet I find it so hard to let go of all the things I easily denounce by words but not by moves. I lack trust, sometimes even interest. I fail at my attempts to do for You by doing very little or nothing at all. Help me to show You to the world in everything I do, whether it's helping someone in a time of need, being there for my family and friends, teaching others about You, even through a simple smile or hello or the way I carry myself and, yes, even in how I dress. In my weakness and shortcomings, I ask that You supply what I lack, increase my love and faith in You, enhancing my relationship with You when I am alone as well as in the presence of Your people. I am thankful for Your love and kindness and am aware that all that I do can never amount to all that You've done and continue to do. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

God bless!

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