Boots Laced Week 5: Little People

(Homily for Twenty-Ninth Ordinary Sunday Year C)

Message: We are little people who God chooses for a vital mission. To get our boots laced we need intercessory prayer, especially before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament.

Last week we talked about the most common way a young man gets his boots laced: by responding to the vocation of matrimony. This weekend we see something essential to living that vocation or any calling: intercessory prayer. That's how Moses won a fierce battle; that how the widow obtained justice for herself and for her children.

A young person can intercede for a future spouse. Once a girl started praying for her future husband. She didn't know him but when they finally met and married, she told him about her prayer. He admitted he had undergone attacks - temptations against purity, temptations to abuse alcohol and drugs. Once he contemplated ending his life. Well, this couple has begun a marriage based on prayer: joining their hands to pray together and when they are apart interceding one for the other.

The great prayer is what you are doing now: the Mass. This weekend I challenge you to take a further step by coming to Jesus present in the Blessed Sacrament. We'll have a special invitation at the end of the homily.

We need prayer because we are little people. Recognizing that reality we turn to God. The Bible says that Moses was meek, the meekest man on the earth. (Num 12:3) As we see today Moses' power comes from his humility, his dependence on God.

God chooses the most humble for the biggest roles. You can see it in the Bible. You can also see it in works of literature like Lord of the Rings. You might remember that the Fellowship of the Ring included an elf, a dwarf, two men, four hobbits and a wizard. Who do they choose to bear the ring of power - the one ring? Not the powerful Wizard, not the immortal elf, the muscular dwarf or even a man. No, they choose a hobbit, 3 feet high, a halfling. The hobbit has no greater ambition than raising a garden and eating seven meals a day! Nevertheless the fellowship selects Frodo. Accompanied by another hobbit, Samwise, Frodo bears the One Ring.

Tolkien, the author of Lord of the Rings, had a profound Christian vision. He knew that God chooses little people for the most important mission. At this moment the most important thing happening on this planet may be the struggle in your heart or your family. Imitate Moses. He keeps his hands raised in prayer.

Pick up your Bible. St. Paul tells us today that the Scriptures, inspired by God, have what we need for teaching, correction and training. Take your Bible - or a missalette - and go before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. Thank him for what you have, ask him for what you need, repent for your failings, resolve to do better and then spend time praising Jesus. When we praise him the devil flees.

We are little people who God chooses for a vital mission. To get our boots laced we need intercessory prayer, especially before Jesus in the Blessed Sacrament. To make this invitation, I now ask you to give your full attention to ______.

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Spanish Version

From Archives (Homilies for Twenty-Ninth Sunday, Year C):

2013: Focus on Prayer, Part Two: Persistence
2010: Persistent Prayer - The Eucharist
2007: The Manly Task of Intercession
2004: A Significant Battlefront
2001: Such a Home Is Prayer
1998: All Scripture is Inspired

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