Yesterday, we heard of the tragedy in the Diocese of Phoenix. There was a shooting at a high school in Portland, Oregon on Tuesday. There was another school shooting last week in Seattle, Washington. At the end of May, a man went on a shooting rampage on the campus of the University of California, Santa Barbara. In April, there was a shooting at Fort Hood…. The list continues… Has the world gone mad? Absolutely, it has. So, what does that mean for us as Christians?
It means we are being called. We are called to be the light in a dark world. Where people sow death and hatred, we must sow life and Truth. We are being called to use our talents to show that hope is still alive and that God has not abandoned us. That every single life is precious, and every single person is loved. Something is missing when people despair and create such violence. We, meaning you and I, must fill in that empty space and show people the truth about Love. About He who made each one of us! So how can we do that?
We must not hide our lamp under a bushel basket, but set it on a lampstand! Whether you are a novelist, poet, film maker, businessman, singer, actor, desk clerk, dancer, student… use your talent to glorify God! When you write, do not write to become a New York Time’s Best Seller. Write as if you are writing a love letter to God. When you sing, do not sing for the praise of your audience. Sing as if you are singing in front of the heavenly throne. When you work, do not work for money or a promotion. Work as if you are working beside Jesus, the carpenter. When you study, do not study for grades or a degree. Study to discover Truth and knowledge about the Creator.
Do not do what the world expects of you. The world does not create beauty. God does. Your talents are gifts to be used not for your own glory, but for God’s. It does not matter if you do not receive praise; it matters that the souls yearning for Truth see that light shining in you. That is the only way that evil and despair are defeated. The more souls you touch, the fewer will give in to darkness. If you can bring just even one person closer to God in your daily work, then you are doing it right.
And if you have a talent that you are not using, use it. For we will be called to account for everything that we do, and what we do not do. As Steve Ray says, “Believing is a verb. It is an action.” Pentecost has come and gone, and God is sending you out! Do not be afraid!
“Be who God meant you to be and you will set the world on fire.”-St Catherine of Siena