How Honest am I with Myself?
Trying to place an opinion of ourselves is not always an easy task. We must look into our everyday activity that appears to make sense and push aside those areas that are senseless. Usually, discerning between the good and bad or useful as opposed to junk is not what most of us take time to separate. Perhaps there aren’t too many people who sit looking to analyze themselves and write or categorize their everyday movements.
The question of our honesty relies on the analysis we should use to become aware of when other people and their need for charity is essential each time the title Christian is directed at us. Too often we may find ourselves among the many who go through the motions of attending Church; filling the collection basket with our apportioned donation, and going through the expected mannerisms with our neighbors. Once the Mass has concluded we wait until the next week and go through the same routine.
It is what fills our left-over moments after church attendance on Sunday that gets our attention. At least it should. During the days of Lent or Advent we try to promote within ourselves some adherence to living the charity of concern for the poor and disenfranchised as best we are able. The thought of establishing some type of concern for those around us who have their hands out begging for alms should touch us. We must be careful to not avoid their need waiting for a directive from the pulpit.
A particular issue for our willing perspective to help goes deeper than Lent or Advent. As great as those periods of generosity are, there is another period of time that extends from between Easter and Christmas; the period of Ordinary Time on the Church Callender. It encompasses all those who are the invisible people from the pews waiting for our charity all the time.
These needs occur on a regular basis when our neighbor who has not been welcoming as we’d like. Or the person who we unfortunately encounter on a regular daily event leaving us with a distaste because of an obnoxious behavior. These are the very ones Jesus spoke of when they crossed his journey with needs far beyond what most of us may encounter. Jesus never turned away the need for anyone who asked; never scrutinized their situation, but lovingly attended to the wants of his children.
Are any of us standing questioning our own honesty as to picking whom we will help? The need of humanity comes at a time we never expect, and in a way that may catch us by surprise and demand a response that opens a heart of compassion. This then becomes Easter and Christmas in July or March. No chronological period, just a hand reaching from the depths of degradation and darkness which we dislike but flesh and blood who are our brothers and sisters waiting for our response with the Love of Christ.
Ralph B. Hathaway