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Everything We Wish

Memorial of St. Paul Miki & Companions

First Reading: 1 Kings 3:4-13

Solomon went to Gibeon to sacrifice there,
because that was the most renowned high place.
Upon its altar Solomon offered a thousand burnt offerings.
In Gibeon the LORD appeared to Solomon in a dream at night.
God said, “Ask something of me and I will give it to you.”
Solomon answered:
“You have shown great favor to your servant, my father David,
because he behaved faithfully toward you,
with justice and an upright heart;
and you have continued this great favor toward him, even today,
seating a son of his on his throne.
O LORD, my God, you have made me, your servant,
king to succeed my father David;
but I am a mere youth, not knowing at all how to act.
I serve you in the midst of the people whom you have chosen,
a people so vast that it cannot be numbered or counted.
Give your servant, therefore, an understanding heart
to judge your people and to distinguish right from wrong.
For who is able to govern this vast people of yours?”

The LORD was pleased that Solomon made this request.
So God said to him: “Because you have asked for this–
not for a long life for yourself,
nor for riches, nor for the life of your enemies,
but for understanding so that you may know what is right–
I do as you requested.
I give you a heart so wise and understanding
that there has never been anyone like you up to now,
and after you there will come no one to equal you.
In addition, I give you what you have not asked for,
such riches and glory that among kings there is not your like.”

Responsorial Psalm: Psalm 119:9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14

R. (12b) Lord, teach me your statutes.
How shall a young man be faultless in his way?
By keeping to your words.
R. Lord, teach me your statutes.
With all my heart I seek you;
let me not stray from your commands.
R. Lord, teach me your statutes.
Within my heart I treasure your promise,
that I may not sin against you.
R. Lord, teach me your statutes.
Blessed are you, O LORD;
teach me your statutes.
R. Lord, teach me your statutes.
With my lips I declare
all the ordinances of your mouth.
R. Lord, teach me your statutes.
In the way of your decrees I rejoice,
as much as in all riches.
R. Lord, teach me your statutes.

Gospel: Mark 6:30-34

The Apostles gathered together with Jesus
and reported all they had done and taught.
He said to them,
“Come away by yourselves to a deserted place and rest a while.”
People were coming and going in great numbers,
and they had no opportunity even to eat.
So they went off in the boat by themselves to a deserted place.
People saw them leaving and many came to know about it.
They hastened there on foot from all the towns
and arrived at the place before them.

When Jesus disembarked and saw the vast crowd,
his heart was moved with pity for them,
for they were like sheep without a shepherd;
and he began to teach them many things.

NAB

feb 6

What if God told you that you could have anything you wanted?

What would your wish be?

I wouldn’t know where to begin. Limitless possibilities can be paralyzing. How would we know what to ask of God when there is no limit to what we could receive? This fairy tale situation is just where Solomon found himself in our reading today. Solomon went to the the holiest altar around and offered a thousand sacrifices. When God appeared to him in his dream and told him to ask for something, how did Solomon know what request to make?

What would you have asked of God at that moment?

Most of us probably don’t find God in our dreams offering to grant our wishes. We do, however, have Jesus’ words that if we ask for something in His name, it will be given to us. What are we supposed to do with this? Do we really ask God for the things we want and expect Him to give them to us?

Solomon’s request stands out because it was not just for himself. Solomon asked God to strengthen his main weakness—his youth and inexperience. Solomon desired wisdom to lead the people of God well, and God was pleased to grant that request (and shower down other blessings that Solomon hadn’t even imagined). When our desires line up with God’s will for us and for the people whose lives we touch, that’s when things really happen. That’s when the Kingdom gets built. That’s when lives get changed.

Maybe those requests excite God in an “oh, I can really do something great with this!” kind of way. After all, God chose to use us as part of His plan to build the Kingdom of Heaven. We are His hands and feet in the world. If we ask Him for the strength and courage to do the work to which He has called us, just think what exciting things could happen!

Lent is almost here. In the coming weeks, let’s pray that our desires would align with God’s will for our lives. Let’s pray for courage to live the lives He is dreaming for us. Let’s pray for strength to serve His people in whatever ways He wants us to serve . . . and then let’s wait on Him and see how He answers those prayers.

Great things could be just around the corner. Are you ready?

In the coming days, pray that God will guide you in asking for what you need to grow closer to Him this Lent.

photo credit

Abbey Dupuy writes her life as a homeschooling mama of four while relying on coffee and grace. You can find out more about her here.

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