Word for Word 6/26/19

Msgr. Ed Lechtenberg
Msgr. Ed Lechtenberg

For your meditation: 1 Kings 19:16, 19-21; Galatians 5:1, 13-8; Luke 9:51-62

There is a difference between being narrow minded and being single minded. A narrow minded person wears blinders. Such a person sees only a part of reality, and seeing only a part he or she misses the whole thing. Such a person is probably bigoted and prejudiced, a real redneck.

But a single minded person sees all of reality and can distinguish between what is important and what’s mere window dressing. He or she sets their sights keenly on what is important and does not let the unimportant trivia distract he or she from the goal. Such a person is solid and reliable, a decisive person and a person of action. His or her prayer, Psalm 16, “I set the Lord ever before me, with him at my right hand I will not be disturbed.”

This is what Jesus is advising us to be. He says, “Whoever puts his hand to the plow but keeps looking back is unfit for the reign of God.”

I like the image he uses. It’s a good, strong, agricultural one. I used such a plow years ago when I worked on the farm for Oscar Sorlie. Before you start to plow a field you have to do some thinking first. The farmer wants the furrow to be straight, so he or she picks out something on the far side of the field to set his or her sights on and when all is ready, he or she boldly cuts through the sod from one end to the other. The same principle is used when rowing a boat across the lake or river.

Now, if the farmer started out lacking confidence, worried he or she would screw it up, that’s probably what would happen. Continually looking back to see if the furrow is straight, the farmer is sure to make a crooked furrow.

We should be single minded in pursuing the one important goal of our lives. Faith in the one true God should give us confidence. With God at my side, I can boldly set out sure of myself and sure of the goal I’m after.

The Lord is my inheritance. Not money, not power, not trinkets, nor trivia, but the Lord. “Keep me, O God, for in you I take refuge; I say to the Lord, my Lord are you, O Lord, my allotted portion and my cup, you it is who hold fast my lot.”

A boy was attending his first wedding. After the service his cousin asked him, “How many women can a man marry?”. “Sixteen”, the boy replied. “How do you know that?” his cousin asked. “Easy. All you have to do is add it up, like the Preacher said: 4 better, 4 worse, 4 richer, 4 poorer.”
(Corny, but I hope you got a smile out of it.)

Msgr. Ed Lechtenberg

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