Study: What are some of your regular chores? Which ones do you find boring, dreary, dull, or difficult?
Pray: Take a moment to count your blessings. Consider the many ways you have been blessed by God.
Serve: How can you help someone with a difficult chore? How can you assist another with a challenging task?
Mass Readings – 19th Sunday of the Year
Every summer my sister and I had a standard routine during school vacation. We would get up, have some breakfast, and face the dreaded work list. Our mother was the master of list making – with her perfect penmanship, she would write out the chores that needed to be done before Amy and I could go down to the beach for some fun. We would groan and complain,”This is SO HARD!” while mom just smiled and reminded us that we all have work to do to keep the house running.
One time when I was feeling particularly oppressed, I had the gall to ask, “What did you do?” and I discovered that my folks:
- Paid all the bills
- Kept up on all the maintenance of the house
- Provided for all our food and clothing
- Handled mysterious things like “insurance” and “taxes”
In other words, I quickly discovered that my life – even with my terrible chores – depended completely on them.
Both Elijah and the crowds in the Gospel discover a similar lesson today. Elijah was grumbling and the people were murmuring, but God fed them (both physically and spiritually) with food for this life and the next.
The point is simple: our lives are completely and entirely dependent upon God. While it is true and important to note that we all have work to do, it is crucial to remember that we have this work because God allows it. Our lives are supported every moment by the grace of the Almighty; the Lord sustains our lives so that we might offer them in our work…the “chores” that we get to do. What’s more, God nourishes us so that we can do these chores with strength, courage, and wisdom.
For several weeks now we have heard how God feeds us with heavenly bread; perhaps today we might take a moment in gratitude to thank the Lord for what we have received, so that we can do today’s work with an open mind and a willing heart. May our chores remind us that they are part of life – a gift which we have received from God.
Archive of Fr. Andrew’s Podcasts
Note: this blog was first published on August 4, 2015.