Daily Reflection for Tuesday, January 21, 2020
Peace and Blessings, Friends and Parishioners,
We encourage you to reflect on Tuesday’s readings at this link:
If you prefer to use your own Bible, the readings are:
First Reading: 1 Samuel 16:1-13
Responsorial: Psalm 89:20-22, 27-28
Gospel: Mark 2: 23-28
Our reflection on Tuesday’s readings:
The Lord said to Samuel, “How long will you grieve for Saul…” 1 Samuel 16: 1
If the moment ever comes when I meet the prophet Samuel in heaven, I think we will have a lot to talk about—specifically, our disappointed expectations and how God eventually achieved even greater good than we’d dreamed of.
In today’s first reading we hear the story of God directing Samuel to go to Bethlehem and to anoint a new king chosen from among the sons of Jesse. Years earlier God had instructed Samuel to anoint Saul as king. At that glorious moment Samuel declared to the people, “Do you see the man whom the Lord has chosen? There is none like him among all the people!” (1 Samuel 10:24) Samuel’s high hopes and expectations for Saul turned to grief when the Lord withdrew His favor from Saul and decided to try again with a new king, David. It is as if God is saying to Samuel: “Stop grieving for Saul. Trust me on this.”
Like Samuel, I can think of many times in my life when my desires were disappointed. But every time, God eventually guided me to something better, deeper, richer:
- Youthful romantic hopes that came to nothing but I have a wonderful husband of 52 years
- Youthful dreams of glamorous jobs that never materialized but being enriched by years of more deeply satisfying ministerial work
- Projects that didn’t turn out the way I envisioned but actually better when I learning to give up control and to trust in others’ gifts and the richness of collaboration
So, today I wonder how God might still be posing to me a similar question to the one he posed to Samuel: “Jean, how long will you grieve for…?” In other words, how long will I cling to my current disappointments/preconceptions? Can I trust God with alternative, better outcomes? Can I simply be patient, trusting that God’s grace will eventually achieve some good I cannot currently imagine?
Ask yourself the same questions. Today, what disappointments, regrets, losses are weighing you down? Can you hand them over to God with trust that God’s infinite love will provide guidance and new possibilities that you cannot currently see? God has His plans.
Wishing you God’s blessings,