Sunday, June 22, 2014

The Center of Your Life

“What is the center of your life?”  That is the question asked of us on this feast day of Corpus Christi, the feast of the Body and Blood of Jesus Christ.  Christ is meant to be the center of our lives --- and nothing else.  He came to give us new life.
This feast focuses on the Eucharist, the simple host we can receive at every mass, but it is not simple.  Jesus Himself said:  This is My Body; This is My Blood.  What is the center of your life?  It is meant that He be the center.
The center of my life is how I lead my life, what I think important, why I do what I do.  Is it for me and my happiness that I act --- is that the center of my life?  That is the question we need to honestly ask ourselves.  That wasn’t the example that Jesus gave us.  He put anyone BUT Himself first.  He showed us how to live a life of love.  He loved the Father.  He loved His neighbor.  He gave us commandments to do the same, to live life as He did.
What is the center of your life?  Today is a day meant for us to consider this question.  We need to kneel more often, to look at our life honestly, before the Lord --- to ask Him to show us our lives as in a mirror, to see what He sees.
What is the center of my life?
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On the radio on the way to church, the news mentioned that our Secretary of State, John Kerry, was in Egypt.  “He is there to promote a more inclusive government in Egypt,” the announcer said. 
I smiled.
Then I thought that perhaps I should send a letter to the editor of the newspaper.  I could sarcastically write: “I’m sure this is just what the people of Egypt need, an inclusive government.  Will it be as our government defines that term, with one that includes people of every minor personal inclination, and each of the 50 sexual identities?  I’m sure that would bring peace to their country, like it has ours.  And to make them happier, perhaps we could open our borders to them, and if they can’t get here, well, we’ll just mail their welfare and subsidy checks to them.  Oh yes, we know how to make a perfect, inclusive government.  It is the focus of all we do, and look how happy we are.”
Sarcasm.  Yes, a letter like that might get printed in some paper, and some people would laugh and see my name --- see me.  But looking at this action, as in a mirror, what does it show about the center of my life?  Is it implying that I am the center of my life?  Oh no, of course not ---- surely not me.  But what would be the value of proposed letter-writing sarcasm?  Our government wouldn’t change; people’s attitudes wouldn’t change; the only purpose would be to make people look at me.  Is that an example of putting the Body of Christ at the center of my life?
I soooo often do not see my words and actions as others do.
And what of YOUR actions, your words, your anger, your speaking out, or your sarcasm?  By YOUR example, which all of us can see, who is the center of your life? 
All of us have a human vocation, things we must do, as parent, as spouse, as employee, and these things require our mind’s focus.  But what of our heart’s focus, when those obligations are fulfilled?  Data says that a huge portion of our lives are spent focused on electronic gadgets of one type or another.  Why?  Who for?
Lest you forget, there was a supreme God, the Father.  He chose to offer, in sacrifice, the life of His only Son.  Why?  Who for?  By that action, who was the center of His life, His heart? 
It was us.
He gave us an example.  He doesn’t expect us to sacrifice our children or so love the whole world.  But He does say: My yoke is easy, and my burden light.
All He asks for is your love, for you to love God and neighbor, as Jesus showed you ---- and to put others, not yourself, as the center of your life.
Corpus Christi, the Body and the Blood, offered for us 2000 years ago, and still offered to us each day.  Who do you think He does this for?  Who do you think is the center of His life?
Think some, this day, on what is the center of yours.   

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