In the wake of the Charlottesville debacle, I see many of us calling for prayer to end violence and hate. Lots of people calling for prayer, but how many of us will really pray, and I don’t mean a hollow prayer, recited by rote and distractedly without any passion, zeal or Charity. How many times do we promise to pray for someone, yet then never offer up that prayer intention?
We declare that we are a people of prayer, but I would guess that many of us, don’t really even understand or know what prayer is. There are ways to pray, and there are ways to superficially recite words without any relationship to divinity. Prayer is relationship with God. We can say that we love Jesus and have our own personal relationship with him all that we want, but if we truly seek a relationship with Christ, the proof is in the pudding so to speak, and you must put your money where your mouth is.
If we truly love Jesus and desire relationship with him then we will use our treasures, time, and relationships to that end. These are the true measurements of what we find important and what we focus on in our lives: how we spend our money, how we spend our time, and who we hang out with.
So, let me ask you, when was the last time you changed your schedule to deliberately spend time with Jesus? Do we schedule time for Jesus into our daily and weekly calendars? In the last week did we schedule time for him specifically? If no, then we really are not devoted to him, and though we may believe that we have a relationship with him, we really don’t. We are succumbing to the lies of the Evil One, and really must make some changes and re-prioritize our schedules.
When was the last time that you spent money on something that would further the Kingdom of God here on Earth, or indicate that you are a Christian? If we look back through our spending history for 30 days is there evidence of a financial commitment to our faith and love for Jesus. If not, then we are falling short. If we are not donating any of our treasure toward Christian endeavors, whatever that may be, then we are not truly dedicated and loyal to our Christian Faith and Jesus.
What are your relationships like? Do we surround ourselves with others who are running the race for Christ? Do we pursue relationships that will help our faith to grow, and severe ones that are toxic and harmful to our Faith and the practice of it? As Christians we are commanded to proclaim the good news, and we are stronger in numbers, so it is in numbers that we can be most effective and supportive of each other. If we are not surrounding ourselves with others who can run the race alongside us, then we will fall short of the finish line. We need each other to cheer us on, and to overcome the obstacles that Satan will put in our paths. There is safety in numbers, which is why community is so vital and important, and why worshiping together as a universal Catholic community is so desperately vital.
That’s it. Where do we commit our most valuable resources of time, treasure and relationship? These aspects of life, pretty much define who and what we are, birds of a feather really do flock together. Hopefully these priorities will define us as a lovers of Christ, and not lovers of self or this world. It really is as easy and telling as that. If we are dedicated to Christ who is love itself, then we can change the world and end the violence, but it must be a true commitment, a genuine one. A true and genuine commitment can be measured by how we spend our time and treasure and who we choose to be in relationship with.
Spend wisely, of your money, time and relationships. Our souls depend on it and so does the end of hatred in this world.