"The Lord God planted a garden in Eden...and He placed there the man whom He had formed." —Genesis 2:8
People frequently blame God for the cruelty and tragedies that occur in this world. This attitude of blaming God stems from the assumption that He created and orchestrated every situation and circumstance in the present, visible world. Today's first reading debunks this attitude and proclaims that what God created was "delightful" and "good" (Gn 2:9).
God freely and lovingly created man and gave him the breath of life. God not only provided man with an abundance of good food, but He also blessed man's spirit by creating an environment that was "delightful to look at" (Gn 2:9). All of this was a sheer gift from God. In the world He created, God did not require man to produce his own food; that requirement was chosen by man when Adam and Eve decided to handle their own affairs (Gn 3:19). God appointed man to "care for" the earth (Gn 2:15), and man "didn't care." People might say that "God just doesn't care," but the truth is that the injustices of this world occur because man didn't and doesn't "care" for God's creation.
On Friday, we will see that the free choice of man is what has caused the disorder that exists in our present world. Even that tragic choice can't change the nature of God. God is good. He loves the people He has created and He provides everything necessary for each one of them. He has not changed (see Heb 13:8), and He still sends forth provisions to this earth to provide for our needs (see Mt 5:45; 6:30; Phil 4:19). "O Lord, my God, You are great indeed!" (Ps 104:1)
Prayer: Father, thank You for giving me the breath of life. I will spend my life giving thanks and praise to You.
Promise: "When You send forth Your Spirit, they are created, and You renew the face of the earth." —Ps 104:30
Praise: St. Scholastica left her family to found a religious community.
(This teaching was submitted by one of our editors.)
Nihil obstat: Reverend Robert L. Hagedorn, July 23, 1998
Imprimatur: †Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, July 27, 1998
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