Embracing Signs

Photo:  Sister Nancy A. Sell, OSF

Photo: Sister Nancy A. Sell, OSF

The sound of the fog horn. The train’s whistle.  The warning:  this may be hazardous to your health.  Fatigue that won’t go away.  Persistent pain, physically, emotionally or spiritually.  What do these “signs” have in common?  They are warnings of sort.  They bring our attention to the fact that something needs our attention.    Something is out of alignment.  Energy may be blocked.

A  crash. Two boats collide.  A car hits a train.  We do not feel physically well.  What do these possibly have in common?  It may be that we did not heed signs.

In the gospel of Luke (16:19-31) from the Christian scriptures, Jesus tells the story of a poor man, Lazarus and a rich man.  Lazarus was hungry.   He would gladly eat scraps.  The rich man ate sumptuously each day.  The story goes that in eternity the rich man realized that he had not shared his wealth.  He ignored the poor.  The rich man wanted to send a messenger to earth to tell others that happiness lies in sharing, caring, and giving.   Jesus said there are people who try to tell others that happiness, peace, and contentment lie in sharing and caring, in compassion and giving from the heart.  Some do not listen, Jesus says.  The signs are there, they do not heed the warning.

What are the signs in our lives that indicate something is out of balance?  Do we look for love, happiness, peace and contentment in all the wrong places?    What are the riches in our lives?  Do we count the hidden treasures of life as riches:  relationship with the divine, supportive friends and family, the beauty of the earth, a gentle breeze, a stunning sunrise or sunset, a glorious full moon, waves against the shore, etc?  What does it mean to share not only material wealth, but our gifts and talents, time and energy, sensitivity and compassion?

Mahatma Gandhi said, “Live simply so others may simply live.”  Perhaps this was the message the rich man in the gospel story wanted his friends and family to hear.

How do I live simply so that others may simply live?

Our invitation is to embrace signs.

Blessings and peace

About SisterNancy

I am a Catholic Sister, a member of the School Sisters of St. Francis from Milwaukee, Wisconsin. I enjoy swimming and nature: hiking in the mountains and along rolling hills, sitting by water and walking through the various seasons of life. I am a spiritual director, spirituality consultant, chaplain and retreat director. You can contact me at sisternancyosf@gmail.com
This entry was posted in divine, Gandhi, Lazarus, Live simply, rich man, Spirituality and tagged , . Bookmark the permalink.

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