Rich food and choice wines

Today’s readings invite us to great feasts. In the first reading, from Isaiah, we hear, “On this mountain the LORD of hosts will provide for all peoples a feast of rich food and choice wines, juicy, rich food and pure, choice wines.” In the Gospel we hear Jesus liken the kingdom of heaven to a king who gave a wedding feast for his son. He reminds those invited, “I have prepared my banquet, my calves and fattened cattle are killed, and everything is ready; come to the feast.”

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We are stewards of his vineyard

I am once again reminded of a sentiment penned by Khalil Gibran: “If you love somebody, let them go, for if they return, they were always yours. And if they don’t, they never were.” I must confess, when I read those words I always think of God and how he loves us so; he loves us so much that he is willing to let us go, in the hope we will return to him.

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words are not enough

This parable for most of us, has a familiar ring to it. At some point in our lives, we can usually recall saying one thing and doing another. Most, I imagine, have been like the son who said “yes” but then refused to act upon their assent; fewer are like the one who said “no” but then acted to the contrary.

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The Kingdom is one of Justice

Today’s Gospel tugs at our sense of “fair play.” We are all familiar with the concept of fairness. From an early age, we learn what “fairness” is all about. Soon after the words “No!” and “Mine!” we all learn that marvelous phrase, “It’s not fair!” As parents, we have all heard it from our children, I heard it frequently from my own daughters even though they knew what I would say to them in response, “Life’s not fair, so deal with it.

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Forgiveness entails sacrifice

Alexander Pope, in his poem An Essay on Criticism wrote, “To err is human; to forgive, divine.” With these few words, Pope managed to convey the essential message of the readings today.

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Of whom do we love?

There  is something to be said for neighbors. Some we know well and some we know not at all. Some we like and some…well, not so much. Some we trust and some we attempt to avoid like a plague. Some are always willing and eager to help when you are in need and others quickly find themselves too busy to lend a hand. Some will do for you before you ask of them.

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foundation or stumbling block?

Sometimes, we simply fail to see the forest for the tree. Too often we see only ourselves, thinking only of our needs, our desires, our wants. We look inside ourselves for the answers and when the answers elude us, we blame others, we blame God, but never once do we find fault within our own self.

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behind the wheel

There are some things that will never change. Parents know this to be true, especially when “that” day arrives. You know of course to what I am speaking, that magical, marvelous, wonderful, stupendous, awesome day (according to your child;) that utterly appalling, frightening, unbelievable, anxious, not ready to admit sixteenth birthday. The angst you experience is not so much from the realization that time has flown so fast your mind has not thought past that day when you became a parent. No, that sudden sinking feeling comes when your wee one, now suddenly grown so tall, asks to borrow the car!

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but then I found myself

Some years ago, during a weekend visit to the Lake Tahoe area, my wife went for a walk, an “into the woods” hike. As the afternoon wore on and she did not return, I began to be concerned; not overly much, as she often would take such treks to unwind and rid herself of the daily stresses that inevitably tend to overwhelm.

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Sinking like a stone

What is faith? Faith isn’t something you ever achieve. It is not something that you ever nail down as a fait accompli. Faith works this way: Some days you walk on water and other days you sink like a stone. Faith invariably gives way to doubt before it again recovers its confidence, then it loses it again.

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