Thursday, October 06, 2005

God's, mine, or ours

I was tapped to write a personal reflection for this Sunday's stewardship insert into my parish's service leaflet. On the front side will be the rector's theological reflection on trusteeship, based on Matthew 21:33-43 in which Jesus tells a story about the owner of a vineyard who leased it out to tenants. It was a very long-term lease, at the end of which the tenants refused to give to the owner what the vineyard had produced.

I've had a tough, non-self-reflective week and I wrote and then trashed three or four different bits. I threw my hands up in frustration this afternoon, and then tonight I wrote this.

I learn and relearn over and over how good it is to hold things loosely.

Sometimes I learn it with time. All of my time is a gift from God; grabbing every scrap I can, afraid that it will slip away, is exactly the opposite of what God intends. When I’m able to relax and enjoy my kids, letting go of what I might have planned for that time, I am rewarded tenfold. And so are they.

Sometimes I learn it with money. Whether I have little or much, it’s another gift from God. The money I have is to be put to work and, when God calls, put to the use God intends. At times I’ve been stressed over every grocery trip, but at other times we have guests to dinner and our hearts overflow with enjoyment even over soup and bread.

Sometimes I learn it with family, and friends. On occasion I realize that a life may be nearing an end, or a friendship blooming or coming to a close, and I’m able to face it holding our relationship loosely and following God’s voice. At other times I can hardly help myself as I grip tightly and fight for control. Let me guess which yields greater riches for both of us and is God’s desire.


Jan Borelli said...

Absolutely beautiful.

Barbara said...

Thank you, Jan. I think I was writing to myself more than anyone else by that time!