“Your hands made me and fashioned me; give me insight to learn your commands.” Psalms 119:73Isn’t is a little humbling and bewildering to consider that God’s hands made you and fashioned you? The imagery is so intimate and when I consider it, I am left with awe and wonder. How could I, with all of my faults, my self-criticisms and my utter iniquity have been made and fashioned by God? God really expected this as the final product? What if the answer was yes? Is it possible to accept that for all of your shortcomings God is actually pleased with the person he has made you? I think it is true. I have noticed that when I look at people with the love that is of Christ, they are far easier to accept. Likewise, when I look at myself as though I am looking at someone else with that same love, I find it is easier to accept what is looking back.But what about that judgemental God? You know, the one that creates as many obstacles and misery to test me until I break? Oh….THAT God! I think that Jesus spoke to that. I believe what he said was “come to me, all of you who are labored and are burdened and I will give you rest”. (Mt 12) …a quote that can also be found in the Old Testament (Sirach). I think of this because my 7 yr old made the sacrament of Reconciliation today. She was nervous and afraid, but there was no need. The one thing I want my children to understand is that there is never any need to fear God. A penitential heart, (in or out of that actual sacrament), I am convinced, is always received and thereby becomes “sacramental” in the desire to be, once again, in right relationship with God and community. But, as I said to her, the gift that our faith gives us is a place to go when we are burdened, where we know that what we say is sanctified in the vows that our priests take. It is a holy exchange. Since I struggle with the concept of Priest as intermediary I think this is an important point to consider. What I want her and all of the children at this stage of faith to know if that there is nothing that can separate them from the One who made and fashioned them. As we grow, we do separate ourselves sometimes and I think this is a great time, as we prepare for the coming of our True Intermediary, to reflect on our own need to reconcile. Advent, like our sacraments, is a gift that God has given to help us in our humanity. But we are the only ones who can actually choose whether to accept it or not.
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Wife, mother, blogger. Director of Faith Formation at an upstate inner city Catholic parish. Have facilitated adult faith groups. I love to garden even when it goes wrong. Same with writing...and we know it can go wrong. But here is where my love of God and love of writing intersect.