Looking Outside Ourselves

by fscc on October 1, 2007

“Technological society has succeeded in multiplying the occasions of pleasure, but finds great difficulty in giving birth to happiness. For happiness has its origin elsewhere: it is a spiritual thing. “

                        -Pope Paul VI, Exhortation, Gaudere in Domino, 1. 9 April 1975

4 thoughts on “Looking Outside Ourselves”

  1. The beauty of the trees here in WI is stunning. Walking in the woods in the midst of this time of autumm is a spiritual experience for me. I feel my Franciscan roots in the majesty of the trees with their colored leaves. I can’t help but feel the mystery of God’s love through creation. I’d love to hear your thoughts on trees, autumm, the changing seasons, or whatever else this image inspires in you!

  2. Through this meditation/reflection/prayer you are stretching toward the LIGHT Pam! You are also inspiring me and others who read this to pause to allow Jesus to be the Light and Shade in our lives so that we might be that for others!

    Yesterday our music outreach group of Franciscan Sisters of Christian Charity were asked to sing and provide the music for a memorial Mass in Crandon; for the families and friends of all those involved in the terrible tragedy. Bishop Morneau shared about Jesus’ crucifixion from the Gospel of John. One of the ways he helped to ease the burden of suffering was by reminding us that Mary stood beneath the cross watching her Son be killed; but she wasn’t alone. Mary of Magdalene, John, other women…were all with her. Just as we suffered with those involved in Sept. 11; so too many are with all in Crandon at this terribly sad time.

    So Pam, I find your reflection extremely comforting and true. “Both the trees and the people might respond by saying, we strive to live in the light always.”

  3. Looking back on his life in Jesus, Francis saw that in the life of the Spirit, as in nature itself there was a rhythm, a plan that his Father in Heaven had ordained. Jesus Himself spoke in parables of seasons and weathers, and Francis saw in his own soul that they were true… (Bodo, Francis the Journey and the Dream)

    As we look outside of ourselves, at the change of seasons and weathers,which is depicted in this image, I think that we are like Francis. One’s journey is affected by one’s everyday experiences. How does the season and weather affect your relationships? faith? prayer? activities?

  4. I would like to share with you an entry I wrote in my journal towards the end of August on trees, all thoughts inspired by the Lord, by the Holy Spirit. (This is still a work in progress) J

    “This summer, we had some branches trimmed from a tree in our yard. They had grown too large and too long threatening the stability of the tree and endangering our shed of possible damage if they fell. The gentlemen doing the tree trimming stated they grow in such a fashion because ‘that is where the light is.’ These branches stretch themselves to be in the light. Why don’t we stretch ourselves, risk a possible break or fall, just to always be in the living presence, in the living light of the Lord?

    In that light is life, the trees depend on it and on seeking it out they receive their reward. Isn’t it the same for us? Shouldn’t we depend on the Lord to be the light of our lives, to be the one we seek every moment of the day so that we too may grow in the Lord?

    As these trees reach out, the more shade they offer, providing comfort to those on a hot day, in a sense easing their burden. Wouldn’t we in the same respect, as we grow in Christ, reach out in His name, and become as Christ to another who may be suffering in some way? Couldn’t we be the shade, allowing Christ to work through us, to ease the burden of another?

    In that shade of the tree, wouldn’t the person look up to see the light radiating through the leaves, making them (the leaves) almost translucent, shining in the sun? Wouldn’t we too in the same way as humans, be radiant in the Lord? Perhaps that person might question what it is that makes us shine, how is it that we are there to comfort them?

    Both the tree and the person might respond by saying, we strive to live in the light always.”

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