John Connelly


Fifteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time – July 13, 2014
Isaiah 55.10-11 | Psalm 65 | Romans 8.18-23 | Matthew 13.1-23
July 7, 2014

I am sitting here drinking my morning coffee with my young son Nicholas snuggling me and looking over my shoulder as I type these words.

It is an ordinary moment and it is also extraordinary. Nicholas is a true character. Last night he slept alone in a tent on our land.

My word that goes out from my mouth . . . shall not return to me empty - Isaiah 55.11

'My word that goes out from my mouth . . . shall not return to me empty'

Isaiah 55.11

He loves adventure. He loves building things and taking them apart. He is a curious soul, an explorer.

Being a father has really made me realize . . . every one of my eight children is totally unique. It is extraordinary how different each of them is. This is a wonderful reality – the unique design of every soul.


This says a lot about who God is. God creates each one of us uniquely because he loves authentic diversity. We are all different because we each have a personal mission. A specific mission with specific gifts and talents to fulfill a specific purpose.

My son Nicholas was created by God and is loved by God uniquely. He is a wonderful, mysterious and unrepeatable creation.

We should let these ideas soak into the marrow of our being: "I am created and loved by God in a unique way. I have a mission that will never be repeated by another. The relationships I have are unique. The gifts and talents I have are unique. No one can take my place now or in eternity."

So what is the mission God has for you and me today? How do we find it? Personally, I have found St. Augustine's famous saying helpful – "Love God and do what you will." Every moment God holds us in existence, in love and through love. We are sustained by God's love and without love we would not exist.

These are not just nice sounding words. They are a theological fact. This moment, right here right now, God is loving you and me, and holding us in existence.

This day has a purpose. It will never be repeated, and I am called to express God's love to others in today's unique circumstances.


When St. Augustine taught us to love and do what we will, he was speaking of more than a mere feeling. He was speaking of a choice. A choice to be fully present to God and others. A choice to be open, to listen, to be thankful in all the events and relationships.

This might sound difficult but really it is not. What is the duty of this moment? Just be present and calmly aware of God's presence. Live this one moment with love. Every moment lived consciously in the love of God is a perfect moment.


We Catholics are called to live the liturgy and our lives with "full, active, conscious participation" moment by moment.

In this week's readings, God speaks to us of his ultimate purpose: "So shall my word be that goes forth from my mouth; my word shall not return to me void, but shall do my will, achieving the end for which I sent it" (Isaiah 55.11). May we all do God's will and achieve the end for which we were sent.

Jesus, teach me to love in this present moment.