Posted by: livingscripture | February 11, 2009

Fifth Wednesday of Ordinary Time

From the Word of the Day


The Lord God formed man out of the clay of the ground and blew into his nostrils the breath of life, and so man became a living being.             (Genesis 2, 7)


How should we live this Word


With a markedly anthropomorphic language, the sacred author describes the creation of human beings.  God appears as a potter who tenderly shapes His work, giving life to the cold inert clay.  For those who have worked with ceramics, this image is quite eloquent.  What comes from the hands of the artisan has first been conceived in the mind and the heart.  It seeks expression in the unformed mass of clay, almost by caressing it.  Then, if the object does not correspond to expectations, it is not thrown away.  The artisan continues to work on it, smoothing out imperfections or even beginning anew.  image047-creation


Isn’t this what God does with us?   ‘Your hands have made me and shaped me’, reads one psalm.  This happens not only ‘when we were woven in the depths of the earth’, in our mother’s womb, but at every instant.  If I hinder His work with my resistances, if I ruin His masterpiece with sin, He does not cast me off from Him.  Rather, He returns to shape me, even using my mistakes to make me progress toward the ideal of beauty that He had in His heart when He called me into existence.


It is with this poor clay, incapable of itself to gather any tremor of true life, that He continues to infuse His breath, the Holy Spirit, the Spirit of the Son.  It is a continuous ‘rebirth from on High’, a participation in God’s very life to the point of freeing that inner cry, ‘Abba  — Father’!


In my pause for silent contemplation today, I will let explode the joy that bubbles up within me at the thought that I am in God’s hands like the unformed clay He shapes moment by moment.


Lord, pour out Your Spirit on me so that I may live of Your life and glorify You by realizing the marvelous plan You have for me.


The voice of Theophilus of Antioch, Church Father


God gave the earth the breath that nurtures it.  It is His breath that gives life to all things.  If He withheld this breath, all would be annihilated.  This breath vibrates in your voice.  It is God’s breath that you breathe, and you are unaware of it.

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