Spiritual News

Thought Process by Msgr. Marren

June 23, 2017

by Rev. Msgr. Hugh Marren, Pastor
We all like to hear children’s stories. They often have a very amusing twist to them like Tommy, when he asked the teacher, “Should someone be punished for something they haven’t done?”  “No, of course not,” said the teacher.  “Good,” said Tommy, “because I haven’t done my homework.”
Speaking of homework, I remember a story of a sixth grader who went to her mother and asked her,

 “What’s the difference between potential and actual?”  The mother thought for a moment and then replied, “Go ask your dad, ask your brother, and ask your sister what they would do if they found a million dollars lost and no one knew that they had found it.  Would they turn it in, or keep it?”

The young girl decided to ask her older brother first.  “Would I turn it in?  You must be kidding!  That would pay for my college and set me up in business.  Anyhow, it’s probably drug money, of course I’d keep it.”

The sixth grader writes down the answer and now goes to her sister.  “Of course I’d keep it, silly.  What do you think I’d do?  It’s probably a bribe or a payoff that got lost anyway.  I’d shop ‘til I’d drop and then I’d bank the rest.  I’d be set for life.”

The student writes down the answer and now asks her Dad.  “Let me tell you, child,” said her dad, “only two types of people lose a million dollars.  The first types are fools, and fools should not have a million dollars, it’s not good for them.  The second type who loses a million dollars are those who can afford it and they don’t need it, so this is what I’d do with the money.  I’d do up the house, put you kids through college and then would have something left over for my retirement.”

The girl writes down the answer and now shows all three answers to her mom.  “Now,” said the mom, “you see the difference between potential and actual?  Potentially, we are an honest family, but actually, you and I live with three conniving thieves.”  (The Jokesmith)

The power to rationalize is a wonderful gift that God has given to us, but the story of the sixth grader points out that it is easy for us to deceive ourselves in the use of this gift.  Our tendency is to justify our ego-centric, self-indulgent behavior.  We use the blame game, the time game, and many other types of games, but in the end the naked truth is we are only fooling ourselves so that we can live with our own narcissism and self-centeredness.  However in all this we should remember that the Lord sees into the secrets of our heart (Ps: 42:22) and bestows His blessings on the clean of heart (Mt 5:8).
© 2017

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