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Friday, August 12, 2011

"I gave you a land that you had not tilled and cities that you had not built, to dwell in; you have eaten of vineyards and olive groves which you did not plant." Jos 24:13

How much God does for us each day!  How many gifts do we continue to receive!  In the United States: clean air, clean water, more than enough food, and so much more.  Most of us are also blessed with good friends and family who understand and support us, especially when we are lost or upset.  

Now we have only to learn to share God's gifts. As Jesus says very clearly  in the 12th chapter of Luke's gospel: "Much will be required of the person entrusted with much, and still more will be demanded of the person entrusted with more."   Bread for the World reports that almost 16,000 children die every day from hunger, and this in a world that produces enough food to feed everyone.  20% of the world consumes 70% of its food, while in the United States we spend 40 billion dollars a year on diet products, most of which don't work. (Business Week)   These kinds of contradictions not only hurt our head, they send a message to the rest of the world about the United States that suggests we are more concerned about our personal appearance than the health of people around the world.

Today's reading from from Joshua, therefore, not only demands that we be grateful, but that we work together to find ways to distribute God's gifts more equitably.There are any number of agencies and philanthropists trying to do this, (CF), not the least of which is  Catholic Relief Services.

Today I suggest we take an extra moment or three to pause in gratitude for all those working for social change, and then, before eating, ask God for the insight and courage to discern a personal path to help feed hungry people.  When we take for granted the gifts of creation, especially nourishing food and clean water, we dishonor the God who so graciously provides them for us.


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