25th Sunday in Ordinary Time – 20th September
There can be times when we seem to work hard in the heat of the day and wonder what our reward will be. This can be especially true when others seem to benefit from the work we perform. I believe our attitude to our work changes how we work. I am reminded of the story of three street cleaners who were asked why they performed their work. The first said it was so that he could receive a pay cheque at the end of the week and enjoy his weekend. The second said it was so that she could support her family and offer them some security. The third said he saw himself as improving the environment of the place in which he lived to create a spirit of welcome to those who lived in his neighbourhood. All of these three had legitimate expressions of what motivated them into the work, however, the last one saw that his work was focussed almost solely on the needs of others.
In the same way, I believe we need to discover what we fall in love with in life. This will determine how we spend our day and what “reward “we seek for our labour. It also changes how we respond to the labour of others and relate to people who serve us. The essence is on building healthy relationships which allow us to work well. In the end the person finds dignity in their work and in acknowledging the contribution of another we find a spirit of thankfulness emerging in our life.
As Pedro Arrupe wrote:
“Nothing is more practical than finding God, than falling in Love
In a quite absolute, final way.
What you are in love with,
what seizes your imagination,
will affect everything.
It will decide
what will get you out of bed in the morning,
what you do with your evenings,
how you spend your weekends,
what you read,
whom you know,
what breaks your heart,
and what amazes you with joy and gratitude.
Fall in love, stay in love,
and it will decide everything.”
Fr. John Armstrong