The homily today focuses on the challenge to trust God when we are easily tempted to rely on ourselves. Going Behind the Word focuses on the Connection between the mystical Christ and the Body of Christ that is people we can see.
Going Behind the Word
I Don’t Like Group Projects
I remember a time when I was in the seminary when a classmate of mine wanted to work with me on a group project. We had the choice to either work by ourselves or in a group, and my strong preference was to avoid anything that was a group project.
But he was persistent, and finally, I gave in. I had warned him ahead of time that my sense of time management was different than his. I needed the due date for the project to get nearer to provide the necessary push to get the creative juices flowing. My classmate preferred a schedule where the project was completed much earlier.
I knew this could be a problem. I told him so. I made him commit (in writing) to knowing that we viewed the need to be completed by the due date in different terms. The group only got more complicated when my classmate invited a third person to join us.
I Like to Do Things Myself
See, when it came to assignments, and indeed many other things in my life, I like to rely on myself. Working in a group project means having to trust others in the group not only to do the work, but to do it the way that I want it done. And I knew in this instance it might not be so easy to accomplish. It wasn’t.
Despite all of the pre-planning I had done concerning how it is we would engage in projects, manage tasks and deadlines, we did not see eye to eye. And while I still don’t like group projects, I have come to see the connection between a group project and my trust in God (or lack thereof).
It’s the Same with God
See when I am in relationship with God, I want to control that too. Just like I find it a challenge to trust others in a group project, I find it difficult to trust God. This in spite of the fact that God has never let me down, has always led me where I need to go, loves me even when I sin, and so much more.
And still, I fail to trust. I am not unlike the man in the gospel who says, “I believe, help my unbelief!” I so much want to trust more, but I don’t like the thought that God may challenge me to go somewhere I would rather not go.
I also fail to trust even when I see that the things I leave in my control do not always work out well. In my life, taking matters into my own hands does not always produce good things. In fact, trying to control things, even God, makes life more difficult. Not only do I not feel the closeness a relationship with God brings, I find myself in a situation where I am worse off.
Who Can Understand Our Heart? God!
Jeremiah says this in the first reading today. “More tortuous than all else is the human heart, beyond remedy; who can understand it?” I ask myself this question about myself. Why is it I find it so difficult to trust in God? Why is it I know what I should do, but choose to do something else?