Hebrews 3: 7-14
Today! Today! How many more todays do I have? When you have lived eighty two years that becomes an existential question. Tomorrow is not guaranteed. This has hit home to me as news arrived this week that one of my seminary classmates is in hospice care and another rehabbing after a stroke. These are men with whom I have lived and shared meals with in community. We have prayed together and have supported one another in ministry. They are in the Midwest and my assignment is in California. However, I can bring them to prayer and Mass and know that closeness in the spirit that unites us still.
The first reading from Hebrews hits home quoting psalm 95: "Oh, that today would hear his voice!" That is the question. Do we really believe that God speaks to us each day in the circumstances of life? If we answer "yes", then we recognize the gift of each day. We need to encourage ourselves daily while it is still TODAY. Tomorrow may never come. Another truth we need to recognize is that "we have become partners of Christ". In the gospel we see our partner in action. He walks the roads of Palestine and is moved with pity at the plea of a leper. He reaches out his hand, touches the leper, and says to him: "I will do it. Be made clean!" With a partner like Jesus today is all we need. Tomorrow will take care of itself.
Fr. Michael Hoolahan, C.P. is on the staff of Mater Dolorosa Passionist Retreat Center, Sierra Madre, California.