What’s in a name?
What is the proof in the Bible that there were already smart gadgets then? In the Old Testament, God gave two tablets to Moses in Mt. Sinai. In the New Testament, blind Zechariah, when asked for the name of his son, wrote on a tablet: “His name is John.”
In today’s Gospel (Lk. 1, 57-66.80), we hear the narrative about the birth of John the Baptist, the cousin and the herald of Jesus. He had a name, and he had a mission. Let us remember that, when we were born, along with the name given to us were also given our role and our mission in this world.
Christian is our name, and love is our mission, along with persecution. If we never experience persecution of any sort—if our being a Christian, or being a priest for that matter, is all about being comfortable—then we are not living up to our name.
“For surely, the hand of the Lord was with him.” It is good to be reminded of the presence of God’s hand in our lives. Proud and vain people think their life is in their hands, and take pride in their achievements and their plans. The truth is, our so-called “achievements” are small compared to the many blessings we have received in life. Man, be grateful, not proud.
How important our hands are. Think about it: There are people who have only one hand, or no hands at all. Our hands have received so much all these years. Have they also shared much? Our hands have been blessed by God, but have they remained clean, and not dirtied with money or with blood? The answer to these questions is, so to speak, in your hands.
What do we hand over to people after we leave this world? It is good to have an “exit plan.”
It is advisable to let go of what we have in our hands while we still can. Definitely, it is good to let go of our hurts, pride and ill feelings, along with whatever wealth and blessings we can share to people now.
I read about a person confined in the intensive care unit who has a thousand Facebook friends, and so many contacts on Viber and what have you. But, in the end, it was only his parents and siblings, whom he often neglected and took for granted, who were there for him. Often, we are so focused on our virtual friends “out there” that we neglect the real people so dear and near.
So busy making a living or making a name? Stop. What matters more in the end is that you had a life, and that you lived up to your name. The key to peace and happiness is inside you, not outside. Focus more on presence, and less on presents.
Think about this: “Not all storms come to disrupt your life; some storms come to clear your path, and give you a fresh start.”
This year is the Year of the Clergy and Consecrated Persons. Persecutions and killings of priests have always been a part of our Church history, which is full of stories about martyrs. The persecutors will soon be gone. The Church lives on.
Thank you for all your prayers for my good health. It has been a journey, a travel through unfamiliar ways, and often a roller-coaster ride. But always, God is there to provide strength, and He sends people to show the way. God is good! He is in control of everything and of everyone. Amen.
“Be still and know that I am God.” (Ps. 46,10). Let us hold on to this, whatever is happening inside or outside of us. Let us not panic, nor be afraid, nor be discouraged. Let us learn to let go and let God. “Into Your hands, O Lord, I commend my spirit.” They who keep taking matters into their own hands soon realize that they don’t matter at all.
A moment with the Lord:
Lord, help us to live up to our name. Amen.
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