Tuesday, March 25, 2014

It's Not Like a Box of Chocolates

The image I had was of God giving me a gift, a present, that was for me.  Like, say, a box of chocolates.  And to "share my gifts" meant that I got to eat some of the chocolates but I should also give a few chocolates to other people. And maybe some gifts are like this.  The material wealth God blesses us with, for example.  Of course we use it to care for the very real physical needs of our family, but then we share a portion of what we've been given with those in need.  And then I kind of stuck my fingers in my ears and went "lalalalala...I can't hear you" when it came to gifts of talent and ability.
Then I watched Sister Cristina show God to the world, particularly to the judge who calls himself J-Ax on the Italian Voice.

Even if you've seen the video already, you can to go to 3:10 (make sure your cc is on English so you can read the subtitled interview) and see the bit that includes Sr. Cristina saying this:
"I have a gift and I am giving it to you. Shouldn't things be this way?"


And just like J-Ax, I had a serious Holy Spirit moment.

Some gifts are not like boxes of chocolate. 

Some gifts are not given to us for our benefit at all.  They are gifts handed to us, entrusted to us, with the understanding that we will pass them on to others to make their lives better.   Maybe it's my natural tendency toward scrupulosity (why, yes I have worked really hard at quashing said temperament flaw.  Thanks so much for noticing!) but I could always see how something like a gift for healing, for example, would be ridiculous to keep to oneself .

I mean, sick people need to be healed!  Go out and heal them! Sure the end result might also be that you are praised, but cleeeeeeeeeeeeearly the good of the healing is why you're doing it.

But when it came to talents and aptitudes like artistic ability that don't very obviously save a person's life (or some other dramatic phrase that a scrupulous person like me might cling to), I tended to not appreciate or praise them because I was all caught up in some kind of "hey, people are saying really nice things about me so I'm in danger of being prideful so this must be, like, bad or something."  Instead of "wow, God must trust me a lot to give me this with the understanding that I can do His work."

Sometimes a talent is a gift very unlike a box of chocolates.  Sometimes a talent is a gift like a bottomless jug of water handed to us when we are not thirsty.  We don't need the water, but so many people we meet will be grateful to us for sharing it with them.

Go find that jug of water you've been giving.  Quench people's thirst.  And it can show them the peace and beauty of a life lived in Christ

 post signature
Pin It

19 comments :

  1. Wasn't his reaction amazing?! I agree with Kathryn, there was so much more going on behind his tears than just simple surprise. I hope we get to hear the rest of this story some day. Even if we don't, I'm adding him to my prayers.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Wow! What a great post :) xx

    ReplyDelete
  3. yup.
    And I loved, the rocker man, with tears in his eyes...shocked at the joy before him. HUGE lesson on what it means to evangelize (hint- it very rarely has to do with sitting people down and 'talking' about what it means to be a person of faith). Love love love.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Absolutely. That's what moved me originally on Friday when hunted down the video with the full interview at the end. His lengthy emotional reaction clearly had very little to do with her actual singing ability. Who knows how long that glimpse of God will last or what he'll choose to do with it, but the world getting to witness that moment is a joy in and of itself.

      Delete
  4. I keep watching it over and over again. Their reactions are amazing. As is her joy. You can't look at her and not see God. So, so, so beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

    ReplyDelete
  5. I've thought about this a handful of times too, though not so eloquently. I'm guilty of automatically assuming I'm being prideful if I focus on gifts I've been given too much. There's a line there, of course, but accepting that the gift could be for the benefit of someone else is huge.

    Also, before I read this post, I thought maybe you were going to talk about how all chocolates are delicious so therefore life can't be like a box of chocolates because every option is basically a good one, right? Then I thought that maybe life is more like a box of Bertie Bott jelly beans. Sometimes they're good and sometimes they're bogey flavored. And with that extreme dorkery, I am OUT. ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh. My. Goodness. Can't stop laughing. That's hilarious.

      Delete
  6. As a person who has been "gifted" with Bi-polar Syndrome I can say that there have definitely been times when I've been depressed (like over this past winter, most recently) and someone's gift of, say, musical ability, or blogging, has saved my life. I have heard the voice of God telling me exactly what I needed to hear and it definitely, definitely saved my life.

    ReplyDelete
  7. Ever have one of those moments where God's been slapping you in the face with something and then a quote, movie, tv show, blog post becomes the last aha! moment before you really start seeing God's plans in your life? Well I have had a lot of those in the past few weeks and this is definitely one of them. I have been really blessed with the gift of music, and without getting into too much detail, I realize that for the past few years, I have basically been telling God that bringing people to Him through my music wasn't good enough and that I wanted to be in the secular music world, when clearly my talent is called to be shared in the already faith-filled world. "Sometimes a talent is a gift like a bottomless jug of water handed to us when we are not thirsty." Whew. That really got me. Adding this paraphrase from Mama T (aka Mother Teresa) "God doesn't call us to success; He calls us to fidelity," to that concept, and I have a lot of reflecting to do. Thanks for sharing this great witness!

    ReplyDelete
  8. We mediated on this concept a lot in Carmel--even our prayer time isn't "for us." Every time that we pray, every insight we have about Scripture, that's for the world.

    ReplyDelete
  9. I've been struggling with pride and this perspective is exactly what I needed to read today. Thank you for allowing God to use your gift of writing to speak through you to me today!!

    ReplyDelete
  10. I admit, I didn't click on the video in your last post. I ran out of time and meant to come back to it and forgot so I'm glad you mentioned it again. So good! We are big Voice fans at our house and I'm blown away by their reactions and by her wise words. Something to think about.

    ReplyDelete
  11. I love this post, Dwija. Thank you for reminding us that our gifts and talents are from the Lord... and they ARE meant to be shared. Even if we do have to resist the feelings of being prideful as Kate says above. I am guilty of that, too.

    I think it's also so great to think about what our true gifts and talents are? We all have different ones... and not all of them are so obvious like singing/dancing/writing, but maybe it's your ability to explain something so well, that another person just understands perfectly. Or maybe you can give advice or hold someone accountable without coming across as rude or unloving.

    I think those are the gifts and talents we so often overlook, but are just as important and God-given. :) Thanks again!

    ReplyDelete
  12. That was so awesome and so ageless that I finally have some Lenten wisdom (even tho it's more like EVERY DAY wisdom) that I can pass on to my young adult kids. Thanks Dwija!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. p.s. so sorry for that crummy auto ink thing...I don't know how to get rid of that

      Delete
  13. Yes!!!!! As I continue to "attempt" to never make it about me, but always about others. This trying to live Christlike is just dang hard:)))

    ReplyDelete
  14. So beautiful! I can't stop thinking about the effect she had on these judges, what it meant to them, and how it might change them. I suppose that's another beautiful side of the virtue of humility- not only do you gift your gifts freely, but you dot assume control over the outcome of that gift. I'd be so hungry for information as to whether or not *I* changed them... Perfect humility gives and can also walk away with no knowledge of the potential impact. Such trust in the mercy and goodness of God.

    ReplyDelete

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...