Our Life Is God’s Gift to Us!
Joseph and His Amazing Technicolor Dream Coat remains to this day a most popular musical. It tells the biblical story of Joseph and how envy caused his brothers to sell him into slavery in Egypt.
Joseph's brothers were jealous because Joseph had more wit, intelligence and charm. They wished he didn't have any of these gifts. Why? Because these gifts made him their father’s favorite son.
His brothers wanted him destroyed because all his sparkle pointed to their emptiness. This is how envy brings death into our world. It simply blinds us to the gifts we have, making us focus instead on someone else’s gifts. We just can’t see what is right in front of us--allowing envy to point out what others possess as “what we must have to be happy.”
Jesus showed us a different way. He treated all people as He wanted them to treat Him. Jesus saw everyone’s gifts as helping one another to achieve our unique purpose in life.
Jesus knew this from experience. He was fair, loving, respectful and concerned. His life style was simple, humble and gentle. He practiced what He preached. Jesus was literally a “breath of fresh air.”
Yet, instead of gaining admiration from the chief priests, Jesus made the chief priests uncomfortable. And before long their envy of Jesus, brought about His death.
They couldn’t handle His diversity--it just didn’t fit into their way of seeing the world. They were not able to embrace differences that make everyone stronger and better--so they decided Jesus had to die.
This past Thanksgiving Day with all its family rituals is our moment to put envy out of our hearts and replace it with gratitude to God for giving us everything we have and use--as well as appreciating with gratitude every gift that others have to do the same.
On this day we remember this basic part of living together, i.e., everyone living on this earth has his or her own distinct talents--that only come from God--for everyone's benefit. And when this happens, God is pleased!
Our Thanksgiving moment is a beautiful time to recall even for a brief, quiet instant that Our life is God’s gift to us--and what we do with it is our gift to God!
St. Francis de Sales:
"If you hold the goods of this world in one hand, hold fast the hand of God with the other. Occasionally turn and see if God is pleased with your use of them."