Here we are on the last day of the shortest month of the year. Spring is coming on March 20, so the calendar says! For many people the winter has been way too long and they are looking for any sign of hope that spring may be just around the corner! The letter of James reminds us to stop grumbling and show more tolerance for one another. For people who are experiencing ‘cabin fever’ after the long, hard winter, grumbling and impatience has become more often the norm.
Psalm 103 also reminds us that God is kind and merciful and the Giver of all good gifts! When things aren’t going our way, we sometimes forget this. We become overwhelmed with the negative and have a harder time seeing all the positives. James tells us there is a simple but challenging solution to these rough times. If we let our ‘YES’ mean ‘YES’ to being open to God’s great love, mercy and understanding and accept and use the gifts we have been given, our world can be a whole lot brighter and more hopeful. This can only happen if we also make a concerted effort to making sure our ‘NO’ means ‘NO’! As faithful followers of a loving God, we are called to say ‘NO’ to all of the ways that cause us to act contrary to the plan our loving God has set before us. March 20 may or may not bring sunshine, warm temperatures and blooming flowers. Placing our hope and trust in the God who has given us the beauty of all the seasons plus so many other good gifts, will surely surround us with all good gifts that come from God above. Did you know that we use many more facial muscles in smiling and saying YES than we do when we frown and say NO! Smile more, frown less.
Spring and new life is right around the corner!
Theresa Secord is a Pastoral Associate at St. Agnes Parish, Louisville, Kentucky.