Thursday, May 19, 2005

The Thoughts of God

I read something from a recent homily of Pope Benedict XVI that should be a blessing and encouragement for all of us. He said, "Each of us is the result of a thought of God, each of us is willed, each of us is loved, each of us is necessary..." It is not difficult to receive the opposite impression from the experiences of daily life in a mostly impersonal, high-technological society, in which our identities are reduced to a series of numbers, and as we blend into the the anonymous herd of humanity.

God has thought of you, has dreamed you up out of his inexhaustible creativity and everlasting love. And so you came to be. His unique thought became flesh in you. You are not an accident, a random occurrence, or "some casual and meaningless product of evolution." Reflect on that for a while. You didn't just appear in the course of nature and then God saw you and said, "Now what am I going to do with this one?" No, you were planned, designed, and loved into being. You have a name and a mission. These may as yet be hidden from you, for we don't always learn our true name, that is, the most profound meaning and direction of our life, all at once. But if you seek you shall discover it. "You shall be called by a new name, which the mouth of the Lord shall give" (Isaiah 62:2).

But the dream of God for our lives may still be unfufilled. This is where our own efforts come in. If we are not accidental incidents in the ebb and flow of life in the universe, then we are called to make a free response to Him who freely "thought us up," who created us for his glory and our everlasting happiness. We need to find our place in the plan of God, discover our deep meaning in the designs of his love, not only for our fulfillment, but for the blessing we are called to give and to be for others. The plans God has for his people are not like so many parallel lines moving toward Him. No, it is more like an intricate embroidery of relationships, all together making up the marvelous Mystical Body of Christ.

As you think about being a thought of God, decide to say yes to his will for you, that his dream for you may come true, that you may know the meaning of your life, bear fruit a hundredfold, and receive your new and true name, "which no one knows except the one who receives it" (Revelation 2:17).