Friday, November 6, 2009

Am I Good?

Am I? Is anyone? Are you?

And what is “good” anyway?

In Mark 10:18 and Luke 18:19 Jesus answers the greeting of, ‘Good teacher’ with, “Why do you call me good? No one is good but God alone.” In Mark’s account it is the Rich Young Man who calls Jesus ‘good’; in Luke’s, it is ‘an official’ who also goes unnamed. However, in both accounts, Jesus is very clear, only God is good.

Yesterday’s Gospel reading was a favorite—the sweet story of the Good Shepherd who risks His whole flock to go in search of that one lost lamb. Who doesn’t see him or herself in that story from time to time?

And yet, we are called to be those righteous sheep who do not stray, those who remain faithful to Our Lord, perhaps rubbing or bumping up against him as a herd of sheep are wont to do.

So I ask myself that question again, ‘Am I good?’

Am I one of the ninety-nine or am I the troublesome lamb which Our Lord has to keep going after?

Today was First Friday. I went to Mass and Confession, said my rosary, and prayed for the souls in Purgatory. I wish I could say I do this all the time. I wish I was always good and never had anything to confess. Rather, I imagine my poor confessor thinking, “Oh no her again! Same old tired sins. Can’t she at least think up some new ones?! But no, I am putting my own uncharitable thoughts in his mind. For all I know, he could be praying for me as I should and will pray for him.

So, no I am not good when left to my own devices.

But yes, I am good because He made me that way.

No, I’m not good when I refuse to cooperate with His plan.

And yet I can be good when I say, “Yes!” to Him.

No, I’m not good when I think I act on my own.

Yes, I’m good when I allow His Holy Spirit to work through me.

Am I good?

Yes and No, depending on my choices.

Please dear Lord, help me choose, “YES!”

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