Jesus Our Shepherd
Mark 2:18-22
8th Sunday in Ordinary Time

Homily for 26 February 2006
Fr. Tom Seibert

How do we view our life?

Some people record their life as in a book.
They organize every detail, all people and events.
Then they secure these memories in chapters to last a lifetime.
They live off the past and want nothing to change.

Some people are afraid to take a good look.
What is in the past is now long over, only to be forgotten.
For them all that really matters is what is true here and now.
They have no plans for the future, for tomorrow will have enough in store.

As for me, I see my life as a huge jigsaw puzzle
a puzzle with thousands upon thousands of pieces,
some already put together, forming a picture of events, a history of sorts.
Flashbulb memories of people, places and lessons learned:
a picture of past successes and even of disappointments. But it is my story;
a story that keeps unfolding because there are even more pieces to be found.

Not long ago, I found a new piece called cancer!
How I wish this piece could have been lost.
Sadly, it is not part of the fabric of my life.
But how does it fit? What will it mean to me now and for my future?

I believe the word cancer does not proclaim death,
for I know there are still more pieces to put together:
prayer, faith, healing, family and friends.
These too are a part of my life; but it is only a shadow
of what is yet to come.

I am not a hero, not a saint.
I am a man called by God to love the best I can.
There is always a struggle to find the pieces to ones puzzle,
to create a life well lived.
However, I do not do it alone.
Family and friends, a community of loving people
and a God who loves me: these are all the pieces I need.