All That We Need

Posted on October 1, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

jealousy

An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the 26th Sunday in Ordinary Tim

Remember a time when jealousy or envy reared it’s ugly head and you wished you had what someone else owned? Maybe it was a house, a car, a bank account, or even that luscious green lawn. All humans have had that feeling before and some of us more often than others. After the emotion hit you, hopefully you considered all the good gifts you did have in your life and gave thanks for them. Let’s pray that you are still not hanging onto those feelings. Unfortunately, we do live in a world that seems to fuel those desires and push us toward wanting more and more.

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Stewards Don’t Compare

Posted on September 24, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

comparison

An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Twenty-Fifth Sunday of Ordinary Time

As everyday stewards, I hope that each of us try to live daily lives of generosity for the glory of God. I hope that we are all working to cultivate characteristics of a good everyday steward so that we can grow in maturity of faith and draw closer to Christ. But if we could accurately see on a magical computer spreadsheet how everyone else around us was living life would it impact how we lived out our stewardship way of life? If we found out that others weren’t trying as hard as we were or they were not nearly as generous would it give us reason to pause?

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The Power of Reconciliation

Posted on September 17, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

reconciliationAn Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Twenty-Fourth Sunday of Ordinary Time

Life was not always easy with my father when I was growing up. Let’s just say he made many decisions along the way that led to fear, anger, and sadness for my family and me. Unfortunately, I was the only one in the family that would years later truly forgive him for his actions. My mother and sister held onto the resentment and anger they felt all their lives. For my father and me, reconciliation led to several years of a deepening relationship before his passing in 2011.

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Stewards of Our Sufferings

Posted on September 14, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

suffering

“So great and outstanding a possession is the cross that he who wins it has won a treasure.” – St. Andrew of Crete

This is complicated, isn’t it? Today crosses come in all shapes, sizes, and functions. You can find them encrusted with diamonds around the necks of celebrities. You can find them in stylized wall hangings, set in craft stores alongside distressed wood signs advising us to “Live – Laugh – Love.” St. Andrew of Crete lived in the seventh century. For St. Andrew, the cross would have retained its original, terrible value as a method of execution. Here we come to the great paradox of Christianity: a method of death as a means to life, a “treasure,” and cause of triumph.

Today’s feast, the Exaltation of the Holy Cross, reminds us that we’re not only stewards of our gifts. We’re also stewards of our sufferings.

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What We Really Owe

Posted on September 10, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

debt

An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Twenty-Third Sunday of Ordinary Time

I have to smile when I read in St. Paul’s Letter to the Romans, “Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another.” I smile because I know that in today’s world few people owe nothing to anyone. We have credit card debt, mortgages, student loans, car loans, and new loans to consolidate old loans. It would seem that we actually owe everything to everyone.

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Our One Thing

Posted on September 7, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

one thing

Guest Post by Chuck Frost

“Purity of heart is what enables us to see.” ― Pope Benedict XVI

I’ve always been fond of a scene in the movie City Slickers, a story of three friends who go on a cattle drive adventure to New Mexico to help sort out their mid-life problems. Billy Crystal plays one of those friends, Mitch, and Jack Palance plays the trail boss, Curly. A turning point for Mitch comes in a scene where he and Curly are riding horseback together.

Curly says to Mitch: “You all come up here about the same age, same problems. You spend about fifty weeks a year getting knots in your rope and then you think two weeks up here will untie them for you. But none of you get it.” He continues: “You know what the secret of life is? Mitch replies, “No, what?” Curly then slowly holds up one finger and says, “One thing, just one thing. You stick to that and everything else don’t mean [nothing].” Mitch then asks, “What’s the one thing?” And Curly answers, “That’s what you’ve got to figure out.”

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Give It Away

Posted on September 3, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

stuff

An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Twenty-Second Sunday of Ordinary Time

How many public self-storage facilities can you find in your city or town? They seem to be popping up everywhere. One day I was talking to my neighbor and he was explaining that he just wanted to have his garage back again. He was thinking about moving everything to a storage unit so he could gain what he wanted more than all that stuff: space. We talked about the fact that if he chose to follow through with it there was no shortage of places to house all of it. Of course, we also agreed that it would be better to simply let go of all it. He could sell it or give it away. But, of course, it was good stuff! So good, in fact, one was tempted to rent a whole new space to house it!

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Do You Know Him?

Posted on August 27, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Twenty-First Sunday of Ordinary Time

know Jesus

Sometimes when I ask one of my children about who they were with or about a classmate at school they answer me with, “You don’t know them.” Apparently, since I do not know him or her personally, I do not need to know the person’s name. I may not know this person but I do know that he or she exists in the everyday life of one of my children. If my children don’t share with me anything about their friend or classmate, I can only assume he or she has no great impact on my sons’ or daughter’s daily lives. Of course, sometimes the response I get is simply my teen being a typical teen.

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Mercy: To Give and Receive

Posted on August 20, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

mercyAn Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Twentieth Sunday of Ordinary Time

The Jubilee Year of Mercy is now in the history books and looking back I wonder if I have been changed at all by the observance. Certainly the focus on mercy wasn’t all about God’s mercy toward me? Yes, I focused on my sin and the need for God’s forgiveness and grace, but hopefully that changed how I live my life and how I offer mercy to others.

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The Graciousness of Mary

Posted on August 15, 2017 by - Everyday Stewardship

An Everyday Stewardship Reflection for the Feast of the Assumption

Assumption of MaryAn everyday steward is called to be gracious. I read once that to be a gracious person meant to walk softly, speak with intent, and to leave those you have met feeling that their lives were better that day because they encountered you. What a way to live!

But alas, living like that each and every day is so very hard. I hate to think that some times people I have encountered are happy to see me go, but I know that it is true. As Christians we are graced people, but on some days, that grace can seem pretty hidden.

If you are looking for an example of gracious living look no further than Our Lady. She answered the call regardless of the cost and she lived her life with a great dignity in the face of horrible trials. She was a gracious host to the Incarnation in her womb and she continues to invite us to get to know her son better. She certainly embodies the definition of gracious living above.

We are called to always be ready and open to the call of her son. He will bring us to those in need, seeking light in a world of darkness. Our hope must be then that after our encounter with another, they will feel enriched by our presence. Of course, we will know, like Our Lady knew before us, that it wasn’t about us at all. It was about the Jesus in us meeting the Jesus in them.