Friday of the Twenty-ninth Week in Ordinary Time

Living in any place long enough, one learns to read some of the signs of nature. In the dry West, the hint of a cloud high up in a cloudless sky indicates that gradually, far more clouds will be coming, and that rain or snow are on the way. In the Great Plains, a dreadful stillness on a humid summer’s day, a hint of rosy gray at dawn, indicates that it is likely one will want to stay close to the tornado shelter by late afternoon. To see and know these things can be essential for well-being and life itself.

In our “plugged in” world, many, if not most, people are oblivious to such signs. One winter when I lived in Wisconsin was record-breaking in its warmth. Not so on the East Coast, where the records for cold were broken. I learned a great lesson when, at winter’s end, people I knew who watched a lot of TV were complaining about how cold the winter had been. But it hadn’t been cold where we lived: the TV was focused on the East Coast, and that is what these TV viewers in Wisconsin were experiencing as reality.

How plugged in are we to the reality God has given, is giving us, every day? Do we know how to read the “signs of the times” in our own lives? Do we see winter coming and act appropriately – that is, as we age, are we preparing for death and judgment, or is our spiritual life one endless comb-over? In the end, there will be no TV to define our reality for us, and this world and its group-take on reality will drop away. The final storms will come, and we will be gone to the Lord of all weathers. May He find us watching for His coming!

October 24th, 2014