A Catholic Convert in Ottawa

Useful to God

Posted on: May 26, 2015

Like many people, I don’t enjoy pulling weeds out of the lawn. Possibly because they seem to spring up again as quickly as the stubble returns to Homer Simpson’s face. Needless to say, my backyard has more dandelions than I’d like.

Which turned out to be a blessing for one brave bunny.

I happened to look outside yesterday morning and spotted a rabbit happily munching on dandelion leaves and then biting off stems, nibbling them almost to the seed head. Something I thought was an eyesore—a nuisance, even—was useful for that creature.

wild rabbit

A wild rabbit selecting dandelion stems in my backyard 

And that made me think of how we might view ourselves. Do we ever see ourselves the way I saw those dandelions—something out of place and not useful? Do we ever think that we’re too weak, too young or too old to serve God? That we lack the strength or talents or skills to accomplish good works for him?

We should never feel that God can’t use us. He has plans to use us. He created us for a purpose:

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

~ Ephesians 2:10*

True, not everyone has the strength of Samson or the wisdom of King Solomon or the preaching ability of the apostle Paul. Instead, each of us has a unique set of gifts and talents, as we read in 1 Corinthians 12:8-11:

To one is given through the Spirit the utterance of wisdom, and to another the utterance of knowledge according to the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by the one Spirit, to another the working of miracles, to another prophecy, to another the ability to distinguish between spirits, to another various kinds of tongues, to another the interpretation of tongues. All these are inspired by one and the same Spirit, who apportions to each one individually as he wills.

We all have gifts that can be used to worship God, to build up the body of Christ, and to share God’s love with others. But if we aren’t sure just what those gifts are, we can ask our family or friends about the things they’ve noticed we’re good at; look into exploring our gifts through volunteer work, classes and workshops; talk to our parish priest about ways we could serve in our parish; and notice the times we think to ourselves that we’d like to serve in a certain way. For example, since joining the Church, I’d often thought that I’d like to serve as an extraordinary minister of the Eucharist. Last fall, at our parish’s ministry fair, I finally found the courage to sign up for this role and received training as an EME.

May we remember that, just as we pray for gifts such as knowledge, understanding and wisdom, so we can pray that the Holy Spirit would reveal our gifts to us and show us how God would have us use them.

(*Scripture references taken from the Holy Bible, Revised Standard Version, Second Catholic Edition.)


4 Responses to "Useful to God"

What a beautiful post! I love how you worked it in to the weeds for the bunny in your yard (who is quite cute by the way!) So important to remember we are all created by God and all have a purpose! God Bless!

Lovely and so true! Knowing that I have something specific, something special to contribute, however small, makes each day purposeful.

Reblogged this on 2nddaniel.

Thanks for the reblog 🙂

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Food for Thought

(Y)ou do not know about tomorrow. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes. Instead you ought to say, “If the Lord wills, we shall live and we shall do this or that.” ~ James 4:14-15

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