Tuesday, September 6, 2011

You’ve Been Warned

“If I say to the wicked man, You shall surely die; and you do not warn him or speak out to dissuade him from his wicked conduct so that he may live: that wicked man shall die for his sin, but I will hold you responsible for his death.” Ezekiel 3: 18

Anyone feel like being a prophet today?

If you do then you probably haven’t read much of the Old Testament and don’t know what normally happens to prophets: they aren’t popular, they don’t have many friends, they aren’t too liked, they are attacked from every direction, they are often in trouble with the government or leaders and more often than not were either sent into exile or executed because they wouldn’t shut-up. So again, anyone feel like being a prophet?

The world is in desperate need of prophets right now. And we’ve had some good ones recently like Blessed Mother Teresa, Blessed Pope John Paul II, Pope Paul VI and our current Holy Father, Pope Benedict XVI. But how many young people in your school, or on your sports team, are listening to the pope? How many of your friends search the Internet for the writings of JPII or Paul VI? How many teens are really going on retreats and conferences where Truth is being spoken and where they are being show charity in the form of warnings about sin and its consequences? How many teens are being respected enough by the adults in their lives to be challenged to live in the manner they were created for? Who are the prophets that the Lord is calling up in your school, your town, your parish? Could it be you?

I think all of us are called to be prophetic in one way or another. I doubt if many of us are called to jump up on the table in the cafeteria at school or work in the middle of lunch and start shouting out spiritual warnings to our peers. But perhaps being prophetic is to live our lives with such holiness and love that people want to be like us (which really means they want to be like Jesus, right?). Perhaps there is a friend in your life that is heading down a wrong path that really needs you to show them the way.

We all want to be liked, but is that the highest calling we have in our lives? Is that what will fulfill us the most? Is that what we want to be able to hang our hat on at the end of the day? Is that what we want our obituary to say about us: that people liked us? Because honestly, it is pretty easy to be liked. But most of the time it involves compromising who we really are and avoiding all conflicts. And in the end, we might be liked, but will we be able to respect ourselves?

Many people in our world today are caught in sin and don’t even know that they are spiritually dying. But they know they are unhappy and unfulfilled. They are desperate for someone, anyone, to show them a better way. Will it be you and me? If so, here I am Lord, ready to do Your will.

Dear Jesus, give me the grace to be prophetic today. Allow my life to reflect Your Truth and love and when I need to speak warnings, let me do it with courage and with love, so that I may help others. Amen.

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