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  • Writer's pictureOlufunmilayo Adekusibe

CAN ONE PERSON REALLY MAKE A DIFFERENCE?


 

Today’s Readings:

1 Timothy 6:13-16

Psalm 100

Luke 8:4-15

 




If you are like me, you grew up in obscurity, not so poor yet not rich. You had some food to eat, you had a place to sleep and you never noticed how hard your parents worked to put clothes on your back or shoes on your feet. To your young mind, the world was a safe place and everyone you knew was a friend or at least friendly. You had a deeper hunger, one that no amount of food can quench. You had big dreams and a gift. You want people to know your name, because for you, popularity amounts to self-worth. You thought you knew what you wanted to do with your life and all you needed to do was excel at school and stay focused. Well, we all know that things are not that straight forward.


A saint who lived in the back-waters of rural Italy, a place called San Giovanni Rotondo is being celebrated today. In fact, if you Google this location, you will almost certainly find his name. But he did not nurse big dreams or did anything remarkably stunning. He simply lived out his religious life as a Franciscan friar. His name is Padre Pio. That is all he was, a simple religious brother and priest. But his simple life, drew many people from all over the world to his Masses and confessional. Even many visit the poor friary where he lived on pilgrimage to this day.


Here are some things you should know about Padre Pio:

  1. Padre Pio was only 5 years old when he expressed a strong desire to serve God.

  2. On Sept. 20, 1918, Padre Pio received the visible wounds of Christ known as “stigmata”, just like St. Francis of Assisi.

  3. The blood from his stigmata smelled of floral perfume.

  4. Padre Pio heard confessions 12 to 15 hours a day.

  5. He had the gift of bilocation, that of being in two places at once.

  6. Before dying at the age of 81, all his wounds healed without scars, just as he had foretold, they would 50 years prior.

  7. Hollywood actor, Shia LaBeouf, who played Padre Pio in a recent movie, has been so inspired after learning about Padre Pio that he is currently in RCIA, with the intention of being confirmed Catholic within the year.


What was exceptional about Padre Pio was his ordinariness. He did as Saint Paul advised, “I put to you the duty of doing all that you have been told, with no faults or failures, until the Appearing of our Lord Jesus Christ” (1 Timothy 6:14). The saints hold the secret of our vocation on earth—they lived ordinary lives extraordinarily well. We have been given the word of God which Christ Himself has planted in the soil of our souls. To the degree to which you accept this word and allow it to guide your thinking, speech and actions, to that extent are you like Christ, living an extraordinary life.

We respond to God’s word in one of four ways. Which of them are you?

  • PATTY – They hear God’s word, but the devil steals it and replaces it with false ideas and teachings.

  • ROCKY – They hear God’s word, but it does not take root because they are preoccupied with the ‘wahala’ of this world (many people fall here).

  • E-CHOKE – They love God, but they love the world and its pleasures even more, so their faith remains stunted.

  • RICHIE – They hear God’s word and allow themselves to be guided by it and yield spiritual fruits by their good and generous heart.


Our ultimate purpose is to make God known and loved. Put differently, all that we think about, say and do ought to reveal the beauty and glory of God. We don’t have to struggle to be seen, loved, heard or known. As we shine through our good life, we reflect the radiance of God’s glory. It matters little if your name is known across the globe or not. What matters is that when your name is mentioned, God is celebrated. Your life can make a world of difference.

JUDE MARY OWOH


 

Prayer:

  1. Praise ye the Lord, Praise the Lord, O my soul.

  2. While I live will I praise the lord. I will sing praises unto my God while I have any being.

  3. Lord, grant that I may live by Your grace an ordinary life extraordinarily well, for the praise and glory of Your name through Christ our Lord.

  4. As from today, sin shall no more have dominion over my life, in Jesus name.

  5. Father, deliver our children, youths, and young adults from the power of the deceiver, in Jesus name.

  6. We bind and cast down the stronghold of the spirit causing seduction, false doctrine, deception, hierocracy, pride and error in the body of Christ, in Jesus name.

  7. Father, let the desire, plans, devices and expectation of the enemies over our nation be frustrated and fail woefully, in Jesus name.

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