(Psalm) Deuteronomy 32:3-4, 7-9, 12
Matthew 18:1-5, 10, 12-14
Saint Clare, Virgin (Memorial)
Be brave and steadfast. (Deuteronomy 31:6)
Have you ever watched an intense relay race as runners pelt down the track to pass the baton and cheer for the next team member? This passage is a little like that, as Moses formally passes the leadership of Israel to Joshua. After spending years at Moses’ side, Joshua had come into his own. Moses had invested so much in his successor, and the time had come for Joshua to take the lead.
Just like Moses, the time will come for each of us to pass the baton to the next generation in the Church. Whether we are actively involved in parish life or trying to make a difference in our communities or living hidden lives of intercession, each of us should start thinking of how those who come after us can continue to advance the work we have been doing for the Lord.
So here’s one question: How am I passing on my faith? The answer would include things like taking your children or grandchildren to Mass, praying with them before meals and bedtime, reading them Bible stories, and helping them learn the difference between right and wrong. It also includes more subtle things like encouraging them to dream about how they can live for more than just themselves or trying to provide a loving and prayerful environment in our homes. Our young people need to know that there is so much more to life than the next paycheck, the next weekend’s activities, or the next big purchase!
Here’s another question: If I could leave the young people around me with just two things to remember, what would they be? God’s love? The promise of salvation? Jesus’ command to love one another? Think about this for a bit; then try to come up with ways that you can incorporate these points in your conversations and in the way your life honors the Lord. It may not seem like much, but it can make a big difference.
We all have the privilege of passing the baton on to the next generation. So let’s try our best to guide and encourage them, to leave a legacy of faith for them, and to release them into God’s loving hands. Let’s all remember that we are handing on a great treasure!
“Lord, show me how to guide the young people around me to know and love you.”~WAU