Monday, March 27, 2017

Lent Day 27 - Honor

How do I honor Christ?

After reading the Gospel this morning, the word "honor" pervaded my thoughts. Honor means to regard with great respect; to fulfill (an obligation) or keep (an agreement). I know God doesn't have a problem fulfilling His part of the covenant with us. It's my human countenance that loses focus at times, allowing the world to dictate my ability to remain peaceful. My thoughts can quickly deteriorate, depending on the conflict ensuing. When I begin to "go there" in my head, the internal battle usually arises, causing me to feel unsettled. I know I am not respecting Christ and all He has done to get me to where I am today. So, how do I honor Him in these circumstances?  I honor Him by accepting His Mercy, even when I feel I don't deserve it. I honor Him by giving up more and more of my free will in exchange for an eternity with Him.

The Gospel today (John 4:43-54) teaches us not to ignore the graces He shows us on a daily basis:

At that time Jesus left [Samaria] for Galilee. For Jesus himself testified
that a prophet has no honor in his native place. When he came into Galilee, the Galileans welcomed him, since they had seen all he had done in Jerusalem at the feast; for they themselves had gone to the feast.

Then he returned to Cana in Galilee, where he had made the water wine.
Now there was a royal official whose son was ill in Capernaum. When he heard that Jesus had arrived in Galilee from Judea, he went to him and asked him to come down and heal his son, who was near death. Jesus said to him, "Unless you people see signs and wonders, you will not believe." The royal official said to him, "Sir, come down before my child dies." Jesus said to him, "You may go; your son will live." The man believed what Jesus said to him and left. While the man was on his way back, his slaves met him and told him that his boy would live. He asked them when he began to recover. They told him, "The fever left him yesterday, about one in the afternoon." The father realized that just at that time Jesus had said to him, "Your son will live," and he and his whole household came to believe. Now this was the second sign Jesus did
when he came to Galilee from Judea.

In Anne's book Staying in Place, she wisely reminds us of the honor Our Lord grants His Children:

"What is a sacrament? According to our Catechism, a sacrament is an outward and visible sign of an inward, invisible grace (St. Augustine). What is grace? Grace is a gift from God. We do not earn a gift. We cannot purchase one. It has to be given and the joy of receiving a gift is two-fold. One, we enjoy the gift itself, particularly if we need it and if it has practical application. Two, we are heartened and consoled that the Giver has contemplated us favorably, in love and earnest desire for connection. When someone earnestly desires connection with us and His motives are selfless, then we cannot help but be touched.

Our God is not a God of limitations and the only thing He is unwilling to interfere with is the action of our free will. If we insist on rejection of God and the family of God, then God will honor our choice."

Lay apostles, think about how you honor God today. Is it through a kind word or smile? Visiting Him in Adoration? Showing patience with a loved one? Whatever it is, make the effort and remember it's a two-way street. God always honors us . . . let's give Him the same in return!

Thank you, Lord, for reminding me honor goes both ways. Help me to honor You in all I do.

God bless,

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