Our faith and our life are one

At a recent prayer service two people rose to speak of their personal journey of faith. The first said that there came a moment in his youth, upon hearing church bells one day, when he realized that his faith and his life were one. His faith was his life and his life was his faith, there was no separation or distinction between the two.  From this statement we should consider the depth and limits of our own faith. Do we live every moment of our lives with faith, in faith, and for our faith? Do we truly live what we believe? Do we live as we believe and believe as we live? As we go about our daily lives, doing ordinary and, at times, extraordinary things, is our faith front and center, out there for everyone to see?

The second person rose to speak of her childhood and of her search for something missing from her life and from her desire to serve God. She spoke of the moment when she heard someone talk of their “personal relationship with Jesus” and how that word “personal” changed her life, forever. Jesus wants a “personal relationship” with each of us and the most important aspect of that relationship is that it has to be “up close and personal.” How often do we have a conversation with Jesus? How often do you ask Him to walk with you, wherever you might go? Have you ever thought to ask a neighbor to walk with you on your journey?

The message was clear. Our faith is and must be personal because our faith and our life are one. We, who have been created by God, must live our lives thanking and praising Him who gives us life. If we separate our lives from our faith, if we hide our faith from the world, then we are, in effect, denying His importance in our lives. We are trying—futilely I might add—to hide or disavow the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. It is as if we are embarrassed by our faith or ashamed of Him. But what has God ever done to embarrass or shame us? All He has ever done is give us life and love us unconditionally, and His “love never fails” [1 Cor 13:8].

As children of God we have been given the gifts of faith, hope, and love; gifts that help us grow in our relationship with the Divine. Through the gift of faith we come to know God and believe in His truth. The gift of hope magnifies our faith with the certain knowledge that God is always present in our lives and that His love is eternal and unconditional. And the gift of love gives us the grace to look beyond ourselves and to love God and our neighbors, more than we love our own self. The more we use these gifts, the more intimate our relationship with God will become.

The second speaker concluded her story of faith with a brief poem, attributed to St. Francis of Assisi, that offers much for us to ponder and to pray.

Such love does the sky now pour,
that whenever I stand in a field,
I have to wring out the light
when I get home.

About the author: Deacon Chuck

Deacon Chuck was ordained into the permanent diaconate on September 17, 2011, in the ministry of service to the Diocese of Reno and assigned to St. Albert the Great Catholic Community. He currently serves as the parish bulletin editor and website administrator. Deacon Chuck continues to serve the parish of Saint Albert the Great Catholic Community of the Diocese of Reno, Nevada. He is the Director of Adult Faith Formation and Homebound Ministries for the parish, conducts frequent adult faith formation workshops, and is a regular homilist. He currently serves as the bulletin editor for the parish bulletin. He writes a weekly column intended to encompass a broad landscape of thoughts and ideas on matters of theology, faith, morals, teachings of the magisterium and the Catholic Church; they are meant to illuminate, illustrate, and catechize the readers and now number more than 230 articles. His latest endeavor is "Colloqui: A journal for restless minds", a weekly journal of about 8 pages similar in content to bulletin reflections. All his reflections, homilies, commentaries, and Colloqui are posted and can be found on his website: http://deaconscorner.org. Comments are always welcome and appreciated. He is the author of two books: "The Voices of God: hearing God in the silence" which offers the reader insights into how to hear God’s voice through all of the noise that surrounds us; and "Echoes of Love: Effervescent Memories" which through a combination of prose and verse provides the reader with a wonderful journey on the way to discovering forever love. He regularly speaks to groups of all ages and size and would welcome the opportunity to speak to your group.

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