The daily Mass readings for today can be found here, at the USCCB.
What, or who, is my god? (my small g-o-d god?) The prophet Hosea says, “We shall say no more, ‘Our god,’ to the work of our hands; for in you the orphan finds compassion.” It is in God alone that we find our peace, not in things of this world. It is in God alone, and His will for us, that we find our purpose. What has been the work of our hands? Has it been to serve Him in all things? I don’t know about you, but I have many g-o-d-s. My phone, my comfortable couch, Oreo cookies, to name just a few. These are the things that I allow to take over my life at times. Certainly they take me away from what is really important. I become a slave to them as they distract me, demand my attention, and direct my thoughts towards things that ‘feel’ good. They’re not bad in themselves, but they can, if I let them, become little g-o-d-s.
In reference to my first blog post, our first freedom is really to choose our attitude at any moment. We can substitute the word direction for attitude. Is the direction of my thoughts towards the will of God? This is the first principle — to slow down enough in order to ask the Holy Spirit, “What is Your will for me, Lord?” Then I am to listen. Then I am to hear. Then I am to obey (cf Ps 81:13). Is it in the Lord that my orphan spirit finds compassion? If our choices are in this direction, the prophet Hosea assures us that we will bear fruit, our paths will be straight, and we will prosper. If only we would listen! (cf Ps 81:8).
It is simple, isn’t it? I say this tongue in cheek, of course. Repenting, loving ourselves, and loving our neighbor cannot be done without a Savior, without His Spirit first placed in us via Baptism. It is through Him, with Him, and in Him that we even have the capacity to approach the glory that God intended for His creation — the straight paths, the “fame of the wine of Lebanon” (Hos 14:8d). We are the pinnacle of His creation; to love Him with all our heart, understanding, and strength is to will it first (by His grace!). Once we understand this concept, we “are not far from the Kingdom” (Mk 12:33). It is God’s desire to share His glory with us! In directing our own will towards His will, “..we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, [will be] transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit” (2 Cor 3:18).
Amen. Jesus, I trust in You.