Recently, my house caught on fire. My son, a seminarian, was asleep in the bedroom next to the room where the fire raged. He and I fled through the smoke without time to save any of his possessions. Hours later, after the firemen extinguished the blaze, we were allowed to return to the house to inspect the damage. My son's room was charred, and many of his possessions were destroyed in the fire. His guitar, which he uses frequently to lead people in worshipping God, had been lying unprotected by his bed. It was covered with soot and ashes. Though the fire had blazed around the guitar, incredibly it was undamaged, and miraculously was still in tune.
God wants us to be like that guitar. We are instruments of God, to be used for His glory. A fiery, spiritual battle rages around us, and we're naturally afraid of getting burned. But God is our Protector, and He promises: "When you walk through fire, you shall not be burned; the flames shall not consume you" (Is 43:2).
We are to be like the burning bush, ablaze with the fire of the Spirit yet not burned out (Ex 3:2). We must let our God, Who is a consuming Fire (Heb 12:29), make of us a "lamp, set aflame and burning bright" (Jn 5:35).
Jesus has come to set a fire on the earth (Lk 12:49). Don't be afraid of burnout. Be His lanterns. Be "the light of the world" (Mt 5:14). Let nations walk by His light shining through your life (cf Is 60:3).
|Rescript: In accord with the Code of Canon Law, I hereby grant the Nihil Obstat ("Permission to Publish") for One Bread, One Body covering the period from June 1, 2006 through July 31, 2006.
†Most Reverend Carl K. Moeddel, Vicar General and Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, December 12, 2005.