As This Builder Grows

During this Christmas season we find ourselves gathering with family and friends. This period also marks the beginning of the 2nd week of The Spiritual Exercises. William Barry SJ describes the shift from week 1 to 2 as follows “the focus has been on us and our needs during the first week. In the Second week we want to be where Jesus is. We want to know him, his values and his mission”. During the beginning of the Second Week we see first hand the creation of a family. We witness how God works through ordinary people like Mary and Joseph. The Sunday between Christmas and New Years is the the Mass of The Holy Family. The three readings presented in this Mass pull together nicely family and family values. My initial focus as I read today’s readings were on Mary, Joseph and Jesus as the Holy Family. But on the second pass I began to notice my attention was primarily on Jesus. This focus on Jesus gently pointed me to question the foundation that my family is built upon. When I refer to this construction, it is my talents as a builder. As a new father/husband, I can see that my home was built on a pile of sand. A nurturing home, but one that has the ability to wash away at any given moment. Over the years I see my houses foundation getting a slight upgrade. This foundation that I’m building my family on is using cut pieces of wood and long nails. This structure is now more secure, being built with a purpose but still fragile. This morning with my focus on Jesus, I begin to see a restoration in progress . These wooden walls are being replaced with cement, a secure and reliable foundation. At the center of this foundation is Jesus, my newly hired hand.
My hope is to continue to build this foundation, and share with my family this construction so they may also get to know the importance of this center piece. I see the foundation today a bit more secure, but I understand the walls can still fall. The difference today is that I have someone that can help me get the foundation back in place. As this builder grows, so will the foundation that he is working on as well as the family that resides in this space. Matthew 7:24-27

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