Finding God on Gannon’s Campus

Welcome back!  I hope that you had the opportunity to spend some quality time with family and friends over that wonderful break.

There is a sense of excitement that we get as we get closer to our destination when we are traveling.  I can remember seeing a sign that read “50 miles to Harrisburg” well after driving over 200 miles. I can tell you that I sure was excited to “only” have to go 50 more.

The spiritual life is just as exciting, but what is most difficult is to not get frustrated when we seem to be traveling so long and nothing seems to be happening or going our way.

The other side of that is when we get a gift in our spiritual life that leads us to be excited. We have to be cautious not to think that we have all the answers.

The upcoming week’s readings are going to deal with the gifts of the Holy Spirit and how we use them in regard to the rest of the body.

The fascinating thing, I believe, is when we are given a gift and it seems that it is so common that we overlook it and think it to be unimportant.

Do you know you have a gift?  What gift do you have? Did you ever think that what your family or friends have in their midst is a gift from God? You are a gift from God.

There are experiences that you have had, both good and bad, that can be shared to help others heal or become better people.

The many experiences that we have during our lives are an opportunity to share a gift with someone.

How about students who have been struggling in their academic lives and you sit them down and give them insight that you found to be successful.

That is a gift.  You are sharing with them very important information that may get them over that hump in their studies.

We sometimes say that what we say isn’t important or that our life is too dull or broken to be of any good to anyone else.

Perhaps the idea of “what do I have to give” can be a result of just not knowing our gifts.

God just didn’t plop us down here on this big blue ball to wander around without guidance. We are the gift of life to each other; we have the connection that is needed to help us all grow to be better people.

There is a part of the gospel this week that strikes me as a source of understanding to our mission at Gannon and our vacations home. “Jesus returned to Galilee in the power of the Spirit.”

Jesus was away and returned. It is as if what we just experienced is a form of that travel that gave us experiences to share that are helpful.

I also think about all the experiences that we have during our time at Gannon, and then carry them to our life beyond and many years of use that they will serve.

There is also a reading that talks about the gifts to the body of Christ and how one gift is necessary for the health of the whole body and how one is no less important that another yet they all hold a total value for the body.

That is where we are right now; it isn’t the old who are only wise, the young are wise too.  The young have the ability to be a positive influence on the body too.

The older sometime are less receptive to the thoughts and ideas, or as we know now, the gifts of the Spirit are at work in all of us.

The phrase “The Spirit blows where it will” is one that we would do well to remember when it comes to listening for that voice of God.

Trying to understand why God does what he does can be frustrating.

There is a story about St. Augustine walking a beach pondering the Trinity, and he meets a boy holding a seashell filled with water.  The boy tells the saint that he is emptying the sea into the pool. To which the brilliant saint responds, “You can’t do that.”

The boy said, “I will sooner empty the sea into this pool than you will manage to get the mystery of the Most Holy Trinity into your head!”

We can’t understand the reasons why or how it is we have the gifts we have. Just remember first and foremost that we are gifts to each other and a gift to be fully given.

As you return to the routine of classes and campus life, be the gift of love for each other and share what has been given to you by our dear Lord, the gift of you and your life.

 

ROB LOPEZ

[email protected]