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For What Do We Pay?

 
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Prayer-Soldier
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2017 11:33 am    Post subject: For What Do We Pay? Reply with quote

For What Do We Pay?

Scripture:


Thus said the Lord to my anointed Cyrus, whose right hand I have taken hold of, to subdue nations before his face, and to turn the backs of kings, and to open the doors before him, and the gates shall not be shut.

For the sake of my servant Jacob, and Israel my elect, I have even called you by your name: I have made a likeness of you, and you have not known me. I am the Lord, and there is none else: there is no God besides me: I girded you, and you have not known me: That they may know who are from the rising of the sun, and they who are from the west, that there is none besides me. I am the Lord, and there is none else:

(Isaiah 45:1, 4-6)

Paul and Sylvanus and Timothy to the church of the Thessalonians: in God the Father and in the Lord Jesus Christ. Grace be to you and peace. We give thanks to God always for you all: making a remembrance of you in our prayers without ceasing, being mindful of the work of your faith and labor and charity: and of the enduring of the hope of our Lord Jesus Christ before God and our Father. Knowing, brethren, beloved of God, your election: For our gospel has not been unto you in word only, but in power also: and in the Holy Spirit and in much fullness, as you know what manner of men we have been among you for your sakes.
(1 Thessalonians 1:1-5)

Then the Pharisees going, consulted among themselves how to ensnare him in his speech. And they sent to him their disciples with the Herodians, saying: Master, we know that you are a true speaker and teach the way of God in truth. Neither care you for any man: for you do not regard the person of men. Tell us therefore what do you think? Is it lawful to give tribute to Caesar, or not? But Jesus knowing their wickedness, said: Why do you tempt me, you hypocrites? Show me the coin of the tribute. And they offered him a penny. And Jesus said to them: Whose image and inscription is this? They say to him: That of Ceaser. Then he said to them: Render therefore to Caesar the things that are belong to Caesar; and to God, the things that belong to God.
(Matthew 22:15-21)

Reflection:

God may still work through us, though we do not fully know His plan, but so may the evil one when we do not seek to know that which our Creator asks of us. We are not simply pawns in a struggle of good and evil, for God created us for a much greater purpose; a purpose to which He constantly calls us, a purpose to which we give meaning by our choices; the purpose of love.

The efforts of the dark one is to seduce us away from that purpose. The evil one may begin in little ways to test how well we are paying attention and how we are willing to compromise ourselves. As we give into small means, the one of darkness will endeavor to entice us further.

If, instead, we turn ourselves to our Creator, He will enable us. We may not always understand in the moment what will come from the doors He opens to us, but if we trust, His work shall be done through us. That which shall come from our words and our actions will be for the blessings of others, but in our obedience, so shall we be blessed.

We are tempted to believe that within the expanse of the world, there is no difference we can make. We are tempted to believe that we are only the follower and can never be the leader. We are tempted to believe we are unable to influence what comes, that there is little consequence to our choices.

While we may not be the one who changes the world, we may be the one who can plant the seeds of what is right and just. While we may not command the power of national politicians or celebrities, we may be the one that provides the example that will flow from one heart into a legacy which flows to the generations. The legacy we leave in the heart of another may not stop the evil of today, but as the love we choose to share takes root, it could grow to nourish the hearts of many for generations to come. We need only say yes to the God who commands us and allow Him to lead us.

We may have meager means for charity, but we must not allow ourselves to be limited by coin. There are many ways by which we may generate value and contribute blessings for the common good and those who suffer. The question we must answer daily is to what purpose we put our endeavors? The evil one would have us focus on selfish desires, but selfishness consumes without nourishing. What we share in blessings may flow from heart to heart and grow to nourish many souls.

As we find hands with which to join, we increase that which at first appears meager. As we encourage one another in civility, compassion, charity, and love; we diminish what is devoted to selfishness and increase the number who endeavor in the ways of God.

Let us, then, consider the charity we may spawn and for what we choose to pay from the fruits of our hands. It is not sufficient for us to say that we have contributed by our taxes, for taxes are taken by law and obligation. True charity comes freely from the heart. Though our payment of taxes may be our civic duty and may go to enable public works, all which is taken may not be used for purposes which are right and just. Neither can we absolve ourselves of the purposes for which are taxes are used if we do not seek to encourage righteousness in our leaders and decision makers. God will know what is beyond our control and our ability to prevent corruption.

If we are in doubt as to what God calls us to do, then, in prayer, we must ask for Him to lead us. If we open our hearts to Him, He will guide us to the blessings of charity and love. He will guide us to the endeavors which are pleasing to Him and which shall be remembered in heaven.

Questions for further reflection:

What has God created in us so we might share of it for the blessings of others?

In what ways may we join hands with those who surround us to share in works of love?

In what ways may we help address the needs of the world?

May the peace and blessings of the Lord be with you always,
Prayer Soldier

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