God Knocks-How do you respond?

Screen shot 2013-02-21 at 4.28.47 PMYou hear a knock at the door and open it to find God saying …  “Come follow me …” (OK, He probably won’t actually knock on your door, but we all know he does call us.)

As God continues with his revelation for your life, you’re thinking, “This is not a good time to be called.  I have a business to run and I need to work.  I owe about $10,000 on my credit cards; I just bought a new car, and I’ve got this home mortgage that needs to be paid!  I just can’t pick up and leave!”

You’re not alone.  Almost every American is in the same predicament and Catholics are no better that the general population.  If God came today asking you to walk away from everything and follow him, would you have to say “No” due to financial obligations? Very often our ability to respond to God’s call is directly related to our financial situation, especially as it applies to debt.

The Bible clearly discourages debt.  Romans 13:8 reads: ‘Owe nothing to anyone, except to love one another,” and in (Proverbs 22:7) we learn that “The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is the slave of the lender.”  If you don’t feel like a slave, try missing a payment on your mortgage, car loan or credit card.

There was a recent newspaper article touting the latest changes that Americans are making in their financial lives by saving more and spending less.  Is this really a permanent change, or is it man’s natural instincts for self-preservation kicking into overdrive? Will it all be forgotten next year when the economy revives and our human instincts for material wealth kick in again?

Maybe instead of a knee jerk reaction to a frightening financial situation, the recent financial woes have provided opportunity for a conversion experience. True conversion means turning our heart and mind toward God.  In Isaiah 55:8, God tells us, For my thoughts are not your thoughts, nor are your ways my ways, says the LORD.”

As users of the resources that God has blessed us with, we should be careful spenders not just during the current crisis, but as a response to his call to be good stewards of all the blessings he has showered upon us.  Our society does not think that how we handle money has a direct impact on our spiritual life.  As Catholics, we must not only think that way but also act that way and live our lives according to Mark 8:36 “For what does it profit a man to gain the whole world and forfeit his soul?

Use today’s economic crises as a time for conversion.  Change your ways.  Think about the future.  We are called to act differently than the rest of the world.  We are called to shine his light.  We are called to make a difference.   We are called to be his presence in the world.  Our situation related to debt can hamper the response to that call.

Think about a different scenario. You hear a knock at the door and open it to hear God say “Come follow me …” As God continues with His revelation for your life, your response is an excited acceptance of the call. “Here I am Lord!  I will go if you lead me.”

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