Saturday, September 1, 2012

Doers and Not Just Hearers

I can't believe today is already September 1st. What happened to June, July, and August? Living in New England all my life, I've always noticed a distinct change in the air once Labor Day passes. I think it's God's way of turning our attention from the lazy days of summer and getting back into the more on-task routines of autumn. 

The Church gives us a great reminder this weekend to get more on-task with how we live our faith as well. In the Second Reading, St. James reminds us that as the "firstfruits" of God's creation, we've been given a divine gift and have an obligation to care for the temporal and spiritual needs of others. 

Dearest brothers and sisters: All good giving and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights,with whom there is no alteration or shadow caused by change. He willed to give us birth by the word of truth that we may be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures.
Humbly welcome the word that has been planted in you and is able to save your souls.
Be doers of the word and not hearers only, deluding yourselves.
Religion that is pure and undefiled before God and the Father is this:to care for orphans and widows in their affliction 
and to keep oneself unstained by the world.   James 1: 17-18, 21b-22, 27

As St. James tells us later on: Faith of itself, without works is dead (2:17) we must do more than hear God's word, we have to put it into action as well. Many church ministries are starting back up this time of year so you might consider getting involved in one of them (I suggest choir) or go back to volunteering in a youth program or soup kitchen. How we choose to glorify God is up to us. The key thing is that we do something and become doers, not just hearers. 

Many of us will take a break from our work tomorrow to celebrate Labor Day. Let's not forget to give thanks to God for our livelihoods and remember our brothers and sisters who are desperately looking for work in these difficult economic times. Maybe that will help us think twice about cursing at the alarm clock when Tuesday morning rolls around. Let us give thanks to the Lord of our work and continue to do the Work of the Lord.

Have a blessed Labor Day Weekend. 

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