"Then to what shall I compare the
people of this generation? What are they like? They are
like children who sit in the marketplace and call to
one another, ´We played the flute for you, but you
did not dance. We sang a dirge, but you did
not weep.´ For John the Baptist came neither eating food
nor drinking wine, and you said, ´He is possessed by
a demon.´ The Son of Man came eating and drinking
and you said, ´Look, he is a glutton and a
drunkard, a friend of tax collectors and sinners.´ But wisdom
is vindicated by all her children."
Introductory Prayer: Eternal God, prayer is your gift to
me. I believe that you give me complete and unlimited
access to your power and mercy. I want to value
this gift of prayer above all things. As I begin
this meditation, I renew my faith, my hope and my
love for you.
give me discernment and constancy in my efforts to follow
1. Endless Excuses: Some
very good and religious people in Jesus’ day complained about
John the Baptist, precursor of the Messiah, because of his
austere lifestyle. “He must be crazy,” they said. They also
complained about Jesus’ apparently excessive liberality with sinners and nonbelievers.
The habit of constantly sifting reality through our own preconceptions
can lead us to reject the things of God. This
is the opposite of faith. It is even the opposite
of the healthy exercise of reason and has become a
limiting rationalism. Rather than seeking to place God neatly in
our own self-created and prearranged world, we need to let
ourselves be shaped by God’s criteria.
2. Fickleness: Spiritual fickleness inevitable leads us to
reject God. The inability to follow through on a particular
spiritual path necessarily leaves us midcourse, far from the goal.
It does not matter whether we follow the austerity of
the disciple John or the apparently liberality of the disciples
of Jesus. What matters is that we follow through to
completion whatever particular path God has given us. As long
as we move, God can guide our steps. If we
don’t move, there is nothing to guide. Waiting around for
some mythical “perfect conditions” is in reality capriciousness and unwillingness
3. Wisdom: Wisdom
is a gift of the Holy Spirit by which we
are able to see and comprehend the divine and human
realities from God’s perspective. Wisdom leads to equilibrium and balance
in our judgments and assessments. We prepare for this gift
by our effort to make good decisions and live by
them. The supernatural gifts build upon the human virtues.
Conversation with Christ: Lord Jesus,
I am indebted to you for your teaching and for
your example. Help me to learn from your life and
your example, and keep me from ever dismissing them as
irrelevant. Help me to be constant in my resolutions so
that I will continue to grow closer to you and
serve you better.
will avoid making excuses today.
By Father Robert Presutti