Thursday, October 23, 2008

A green shoot in the field . . .

     I often complain that I spend a lot of time tilling the soil, spreading the manure, and watering His crops and seldom ever getting to harvest.  Sometimes, though, He feeds me when I need it most.  Today was one of those wonderful examples.  I had just talked to a priest in the diocese whose loved one had been diagnosed with cancer.  We had chatted for a bit longer than I had intended.  Then the phone rang . . .

     "Who have you been talking to all this time?" the voice asked.  I knew the voice, so I gave the answer and the why.  "I'm sorry, Father, I had no right to intrude.  I was just making conversation," she said.  I told her I understood and asked what I could do for her today.  She wanted to know if I could find another needy family for a unit from Angel Food if she gave a gift of one.  I asked if she had someone in mind.  "No, no, nothing like that.  You might not remember, but you helped me get started in Angel Food Ministries over a year ago.  I was one of those people you gifted a unit to help bridge that first month.  I have done it every month since.  This will be my last month on food stamps.  And what I have on the card, I do not need.  I thought maybe this would be a good way to thank God for the blessing you and your church gave me.  And maybe someone else will find the same hope I have found."

     Just like that, on a cold, rainy day in Iowa, He burst in!  Sometimes, as that fellow priest and I were talking, our Lord can seem like a horrible boss.  We are dragged away from family, He seldom lets us see the big picture of all that He has us doing or has planned for us, and far too many of those whom He has called us to serve never seem to appreciate the work we do in His name.  Yet, every now and again, at times which seem random, He lets us see that His kingdom is coming closer, that some hearts are being transformed in His name.  Sometimes, He needs to remind us that He is good, all of the time.  All we really need to do is labor faithfully in His fields.


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