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In Dew and in Rain Always Praise God
January 9, 2017
In Dew and in Rain Always Praise God
A Reflecion for Epiphany
Epiphany of the Lord (January 8, 2017): Isaiah 60:1-6; Psalm 72:1-2, 7-8, 10-11, 12-13; Ephesians 3:2-3a, 5-6; Matthew 2:1-12
In the first reading the prophet Isaiah describes the beauty of the celebration of Christ and his plan to restore foreign nations, which is certainly a reason to praise God. Similar to the Grand Canyon in Arizona, you can see the beautiful colors glistening from the light when the sun rises. The light that you couldn’t see the night before because it was just a dark gaping hole. This reading is a description of God’s light shining over darkness showing us a glimpse of our birth into this world. It’s a reminder to praise him for the lords saving presence in us. He dwells in us everywhere we go and we must not let darkness disturb the inner light God gave us.
A recent trip to El Salvador connected me to the injustices of this world. I spent some time visiting the poor and praying over the sick while learning about the country’s history during the civil war. The encounters I had with the Salvadorians and learning about their sufferings deeply disturbed me, but in a good way, so much that I wanted to serve the poor in Chicago. The responsorial psalm on Sunday reminded me of the injustices we face today and how there is still great perseverance that exists in poverty and in insurmountable circumstances of life and death. But by the gift of God’s grace he saves the lives of the poor when they cry out to him. My mission to El Salvador opened my eyes to the bravery of martyrs like Oscar Romero who spoke for the poor through the voice of God and gave them hope for a better life.
In the second reading we are reminded that we are co-workers of Christ. We need o unite and cooperate with God. Living in a nation that is meant to be a melting pot should show us an example that we are all members of the same body through Christ. We are one family of brothers and sisters. Even though we acknowledge that our enemies are sinful too, we need to remember they are family. God shares his promise with all of us and gives us the opportunity to unite and do good on earth. The whole world is meant to use the grace of God and stewardship in order to fulfill his plan for human salvation. Let us remind ourselves to contribute to the welfare of our country, but to encourage and invite others to give back to the poor in their communities.
The Gospel on Sunday shows us the humility of God when he was born in Bethlehem in an unassuming place of a shack. He speaks to us in subtle ways, which can only be seen and understood when we listen. After Mary gave birth to Jesus, the magi listened to God in a dream to not return to Herod. They believed that the true king was Jesus the messiah and ignored king Herod’s request. They put all their faith in God and took a risk worth taking.
God can speak to us in dreams, in nature, creatures, and people. It is our job to listen to those messages sent to us. In one of my dreams I saw the numbers 368 and 638. The next day I looked up these verses in the bible and it was clear that in dew and in rain God wants us to praise him forever. We can also be quick to interpret our dreams by getting a dream book, but like the maji, we are the only ones that can interpret our dreams. We know that our dreams tell us what is going on in our lives and what God is trying to get us to pay attention to. It can be a dream that tells us what we need to focus on, what we are trying to avoid, and how God is trying to reach us. God is always consistent and his messages are clear and we need to return the consistency by praying and communicating with him. As we move forward in the New Year, let us remember God is our king and savior always and above all else.
Written by Jessica Santiago
Jessica, a catechist teacher at Saint Clement Catholic School, also serves as a confirmation sponsor to others who are pursuing their sacraments at the church. Her intention is to spread the word of Jesus in her daily life through her words and actions. Originally from the East Coast, Jessica earned a bachelor's degree in English from Rutgers University in New Jersey. Upon receiving her degree she worked at Simon & Schuster for four years in Manhattan. Seeking her true calling, Jessica moved to Chicago four years ago. Her decision to become an early childhood teacher prompted her to pursue a graduate degree at Dominican University, which she currently attends and plans to graduate spring of 2017. For the past few years, Jessica has focused on missionary work in places like Nairobi, Kenya and El Salvador where she learned about the oppressed and visited the sick and impoverished communities.