Monday, November 5

"You Spare All Things, Because They are Yours"

"Before the Lord the whole universe is as a grain from a balance

or a drop of morning dew come down upon the earth.

But You have mercy on all, because You can do all things;

and You overlook people's sins that they may repent.

For You love all things that are

and loathe nothing that You have made;

for what You hated, You would not have fashioned.

And how could a thing remain, unless You willed it;

or be preserved, had it not been called forth by You?

But You spare all things, because they are Yours.

Or Lord and lover of souls,

for Your imperishable spirit is in all things!

Therefore You rebuke offenders little by little,

warn them and remind them of the sins they are committing,

that they may abandon their wickedness and believe in You, O Lord!"

-Wisdom 11:22-12:2 (First Reading, 31st Sunday in Ordinary Time, Cycle C) [Douay-Rheims citation]


I read this to the girls while we were driving to Mass on Sunday. I always tell them that it's good for them to have heard it once before Mass so that they get more out of it when they hear it during Mass.


I didn't think so much about the fact that this applies to me, as well.


These were my thoughts on the reading the first time through:


Before the Lord the whole universe is as a grain from a balance
or a drop of morning dew come down upon the earth.


Wow. This really brings home the "God is outside of Time and Space" idea, doesn't it? I mean, as a Catholic, I trust the Magesterium to teach me the truths about God without my having to research it all alone. I can lean on the learning of 2,000 years of holy men and women rather than my own weak little brain. But when I read that, I paused and smiled to myself because it reaffirms what I've already covered in school with the girls: God is outside of time. Remember the snow-globe example I had?


The rest of the reading, I thought, was so wonderful because it applies to me. I am such a sinner, and I continually confess the very same things again and again. (I am so weak in some respects!!) But God is patient and understanding, as long as I am actually repentant. He does not hate me, because He made me and loves me. Thinking very briefly on this right now, it occurs to me that there are many young people who might think that God hates them for some reason. It might do them good to see this Scripture reading, which shows us that God does not hate anything He has made. Why would He make something that He would hate? (Why would anyone?) We mustn't despair! God loves us. Always!


But then, during Mass, I heard the reading again, and this point of God not hating what He has made hit me in a different way.


God made all the angels, including those who we now call devils. And God does not hate the devils. He still loves them, even though they are forever disobedient and in permanent rebellion.


And then I heard this part again:


And how could a thing remain, unless You willed it;
or be preserved, had it not been called forth by You?
But You spare all things, because they are Yours.


And it occurred to me that God does not destroy the devils, either. Even though they refuse to acknowledge it and are forever separated from Him, they are also His.


That must irk them, huh?


**********************************


Now, if this theology is off, I sincerely welcome help, but these are the things that came to me while I was listening to and reading the Scriptures for Mass this weekend. If anyone can shed light on the angels and the theology behind them, please share in the comboxes. I will be happy to update this post with any corrections. I under no circumstances wish to be at odds with the teachings of the Church!


On the other hand, if this is on the right track, also feel free to add to it, and I'll happily update the post with that kind of commentary, as well.



1 comment:

Heidi Hess Saxton said...

Hi, Christine. This reading inspired me as well ... It really put my own little grudges and fits of outrage into perspective.

Write on!

Heidi

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