It seems like I am always harping on my kids to listen to me. “Come down and eat your breakfast!” “Go put on your socks and shoes!” “Where’s the TV remote?” “Quit pushing your brother!” I give so many time outs for disobedience or “selective hearing” if that’s what you want to call it. There is always a reason, always an excuse. When it comes down to it, they simply don’t do what I ask them to or stall for roughly a month or two.
Samuel expresses his frustration with Saul in today’s First Reading for similar reasons. He didn’t obey the Lord’s command. Saul tries to explain it away by saying he did some of what the Lord asked, a portion of it, and then whines about how his army started misbehaving. Well, just like putting on one sock instead of two really isn’t obeying, Saul really didn’t obey, and God decided it was time for someone else to rule.
We truly are blessed abundantly when we walk alongside the Lord. Saul was given the privilege of ruling as long as he obeyed. Once he disobeyed, that privilege was taken away. Most of the time, when I tell my kids to put their socks and shoes on, it’s because I am going to take them someplace fun. When they listen, they have the privilege of going with me.
Just as Samuel told Saul, “The Lord anointed you the king of Israel and sent you on a mission,” we have also been anointed by the Lord in baptism and given a mission in life. The great majority of us are not kings or rulers or even CEO’s, but we do have a mission. Perhaps for some, their mission is more clear, like those called to the priesthood or religious life, but for others, we struggle to realize what that mission is.
Maybe we can draw some direction from the Gospel and seek to pour new wine into fresh wineskins. Yes, we can be a font of renewal, a breath of fresh air, a positive voice in this negative world. We can care, engage, share, listen, and love. We can attempt to be that upright person the Psalmist speaks of in order to see and spread the saving power of God. Through obedience to Him, we can truly be the face of Christ to all we meet.
Tami grew up in Western Michigan, a middle child in a large Catholic family. She spent early young adulthood as a missionary in Mexico, studying theology and philosophy, then worked and traveled extensively before finishing her Bachelor’s Degree in Western Kentucky. She loves tackling home improvement projects, finding fun ways to keep her four boys occupied, quiet conversation with the hubby and finding unique ways to love. She works at Diocesan, is a guest blogger on CatholicMom.com and BlessedIsShe.net, runs her own blog at https://togetherandalways.wordpress.com and has been doing Spanish translations on the side for almost 20 years.