Today’s Gospel: Matthew 18:1-5, 10, 12-14
Memorial of Saint Clare, Virgin
Losing a small child means anguish for a mother’s heart. The guilt and fear she finds herself in as she searches the large playground or the mall after her little one wanders overwhelms her. It is hard to even think straight. She frantically searches in every direction while asking everyone in her path if they have seen her precious child. Her adrenaline is rushing, her heart is pumping, and under her breath she whispers prayers begging God for his safe return. The child himself knows not the danger of his wandering. He probably got distracted by something that looked interesting, and followed it away from his mother’s care.
How many children God sees today, straying from His path to heaven and to life. We follow things that attract and distract like power, prestige, or—like the people of St. Clare’s time—material things and possessions. How good God is in His vigilance during our childlike wanderings away from Him. He leaves the ninety-nine righteous (those safe on the playground), who are also in His care, to search for even one who may have lost his way. And like us moms, His Sacred Heart is pumping fast with the intensity of His love until He secures our return. This same Heart is ready to pour out blood and water which is Mercy, and He will search every inch of the depths of our sinful situations until He can carry us back. Imagine Him singing and laughing as He returns us to the arms of our Mother, the Church. Indeed, she too rejoices in the return home of her children, and readies a feast for them in the Eucharist!
How am I straying from the care of Mother Church? What has distracted me?
Father, I want to be great in your kingdom but need to be reminded daily that there is a way in which to follow You—and that way is humility. Grant me this great gift, so that I can reduce the number of my wanderings and distractions and see where I have lost my way. Create for me a pure heart, like St. Clare’s, who gave up material possessions to possess all joy and good in God. Then my heart will remain peacefully in the arms of my caring Mother, the Church.
We thank our friends at The Word Among Us for providing our gospel reflection team with copies of Abide In My Word 2015: Mass Readings at Your Fingertips. To pray the daily gospels with this wonderful resource, visit The Word Among Us.
Copyright 2015 Cynthia Ann Costello