Reflecting on the grace of God... Sometimes we are blessed, and sometimes we're called to be a blessing to others


It's January 1. Another year over, a new one just begun.  I don't know what it is about New Years that prompts so many people to reflect on the past year and anticipate better days ahead in the new one.  I've been reading so many comments on Facebook about the challenges and struggles of the previous year; and yet, there's a sense of hope for the new year.  

It's a quiet day for me... Still recovering from carpal tunnel surgery and the pain prevents me from being my usual, hands-on, active self. And the weather is just so darn cold that I don't even want to go out for a walk.  Everything is frozen, including the water fountain I drove past yesterday.  

Even the heat in my house struggles to go above 65.  I'm lucky to have electric heaters that supplement the heat.  So I sit here on the sofa, grateful for the warmth emanating from the electric fireplace.   

This morning, I sat on the sofa as usual, Rosary beads in hand. I grumbled silently about the chill in the air and the chronic pain that incapacitates me. But then it occurred to me how much I have to be grateful for.   

How blessed I am to have a roof over my head.
How blessed I am to have warm food to fill me.
How blessed I am to have blankets, heaters, a long heavy coat and bulky sweaters to keep me warm.  


Today, in this country (and the world beyond) there are so many less fortunate.  There are presently more than half a million men, women and children who are homeless in the United States.  

They sleep in their cars or homeless shelters if they're lucky, or they seek shelter under bridges.
They beg for scraps of food and pray that their children won't starve.
They cover themselves with newspapers instead of blankets.  

What do I have to complain about? Because... there but for the grace of God, go I.  

A friend of mine recently shared his story of how one person (him, or you, or me) can make a difference.  It's pretty darn cold here in New Jersey (with the afternoon temp topping out at 20 degrees; wind chill 8 degrees).  But in Minnesota, where this story takes place, the wind chill is minus 18...  
Here is Wayne's story.