When you need God, where do you run? If you’re feeling lonely, do you seek a friend first or do you immediately crawl into God’s lap? If someone hurts you, do you demand an apology before you ask Jesus to kiss your wound?
If your car breaks down, do you call a tow truck before you pray for God’s protection and help? If you need to buy something expensive and you don’t have enough money, do you put it on your credit card or do you seek God’s will about the wisdom of buying this particular product at this particular time?
It’s hard to train ourselves to seek first the Kingdom of God, but this is an important door-opener for blessings. Today’s first reading tells us that we are “cursed” when we trust in anyone and anything other than God.
What does he mean by “cursed”? Insufficiently cared for. Lacking God’s all and everything.
No one but God can ever give us enough of what we need — no one else can give us enough love, enough hope, enough faith, enough help, enough attention, enough reliable guidance, enough patience, enough kindness, enough understanding, or anything else that we need.
Thus, we are like that barren bush that Jeremiah mentioned ((Jeremiah 17:5-10). We’re stranded in the desert, we’re hot and thirsty and wilting. But ….
Blessed are we when we trust in the Lord, running to him first, even though things look bleak or impossible, for with God nothing is impossible.
Blessed are we when we live like the tree that grows beside the waters, for we’re nourished by God’s love and power.
Blessed are we for stretching out our roots to the stream, for we grow close to God’s heart, and thus we don’t fear the heat when it comes, because we know that God’s love will overcome any problems that threaten to overwhelm us.
Our leaves stay green; we don’t wither from the lack of other people’s love and approval. In the year of drought, when everything seems to be going wrong, we don’t worry about what we don’t have, because our joy comes from that place in our souls where our friendship with God thrives. Our faith still bears good fruits. By waiting upon the Lord and relying upon his guidance, whatever we do, prospers (as it adds in today’s responsorial Psalm, Ps 1:1-4, 6).
Good always results from running first to God. Only he can give us fully the love and help and affirmation that we wish we could get from others. Only in God do we receive full healing for our woundedness and the total love that fills every hole in our lives.
© 2016 by Terry A. Modica