One of the folks at St. Paul’s brought me a copy of the parish bulletin from the church one of his children attends. Usually on the front cover of a parish bulletin there is some kind of mission statement, and so it was with this parish. But it was the most unusual and funny statement I’ve ever seen: “We have the faith, but we’re no angels.”
For sure, they are honest folks! In Sunday’s Second Reading, Paul asks us to “Bear with one another charitably” — in other words, love each other. Sometimes we do that well, oftentimes not. There are days when we have great joy in loving and helping others, and there are also days when we get cranky and crabby and end up putting other people down and injuring them by what we say or do, or by our negative and pessimistic attitude.
Paul also implores us to lead a life “worthy of your vocation. Bear with one another charitably, in complete selflessness, gentleness and patience. Do all you can to preserve the unity of the Spirit by the peace that binds you together.” Our vocation as Christians is to continue the work and mission of Jesus by giving life to others. Vocation is not necessarily what we do; it has more to do with who we are.
No matter what your calling in life, there is a common thread that runs through every Christian’s life. If we encourage people, for example, we will boost their confidence. If we praise people they will be more appreciative. If we treat people fairly they will experience justice. If we approve of people they will not feel inferior. If we accept people and are friendly with them, they will be loving. It works almost every time! And if perchance those things don’t work when applied to a certain person, then that’s OKat least you know you tried. Perhaps you planted a seed that someone else will nourish into new life. No act of love ever goes to waste!
Keep the faith.cherish your angelic natureand
Be God’s smile for someone today!