Friday, July 26, 2013


It is a little scary to think that much would be expected of us if we have received much from the Lord. However, the world has the same expectation, and so it seems that we cannot escape such a responsibility. As salvation is a gift given to us by God, it is important to realize that with a gift always comes gratitude. I remember when I celebrated my birthdays as a child, my mother would remind me to write thank you cards to all those who had given me gifts, particularly my grandparents. Others I could thank personally, but I had to write to them as they lived in another state and I rarely saw them personally on my birthday.

Gratitude helps us keep the correct perspective in our relationship with God. Without gratitude, our relationship with Him can turn into an unhealthy presumption of His goodness. Gratitude helps us recognize that God’s gifts to us require a response from us. This tells us that we are unworthy of the gifts but also conditions us to thankfulness, for God has chosen to be so generous with us. Gratitude is essential as it keeps us mindful that we are the unworthy recipient and God is the generous instigator in every situation.

Holiness does not necessarily have to be expressed in long hours in prayer. It can simply be an act of gratitude for the generosity of God. It can be an act of service to others, recognizing that if God has chosen to serve us, then we, too, should make choices to serve others in whatever way we can. Service is being grateful for what we have been given and being willing to share it with those who have less than we do. It is good to foster a spirit of generosity in this sense, as it expresses our gratitude to God and helps us grow in holiness. Fr. Steve Tynan, MGL

REFLECTION QUESTIONS: How do you express your gratitude to God for the gifts He has given you? Do you need to grow in gratitude? In service of others?

Holy Spirit, help me see the importance of serving others and sharing the gifts I have been given as a sign of my gratitude to God.

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