St. Joseph Catholic Church, Clayton MO

106 N. Meramec Avenue – Clayton MO 63105 – Parish Office (314) 726-1221

Notes From The Pastor’s Pen – June 3, 2018


I just got back from a bike ride this evening and it started out really well. I got all green lights on my way out of Clayton. That almost never happens. I’m not going to classify it as a miracle or anything (I did get a few red lights later) but I think we need to be aware of these things and appreciate them when they happen for a few reasons. The first one being that we seem to get upset about it pretty quickly when they are all red lights, but the more important one is that hopefully that chance occurrence of the green lights may put me in the mood where I can appreciate some of the real blessings occurring.

First is just the incredible bodies that God has given us. I don’t mean anyone with special talents or gifts, but just the normal bodies that most of us have if we are not suffering from any particular ailment or disease at the time. The fact that we can move, think, feel, experience so many things with our bodies that God gave us. Sometimes we might be sick or have a limitation in some manner that I wouldn’t attribute directly as a curse by God any more than I would consider that God particularly intended that I should be ambidextrous (which I’m not) as a blessing. I don’t think God micromanages that often. I think he has given us a lot of freedom to have meaning in our lives. But I think the basic set up we have and the variety that can occur was intentional.

Another thing to be grateful for is just the world around us. Having our bodies without an environment would be pretty weird, and probably useless. But God gave us the world, and this night it happened to be a beautiful evening, a little cooler than the last weekend and the clouds just clearing up as I got out for a ride.

But one of the biggest gifts I think God wants us to be aware of and grateful for is each other. Yes, if there weren’t the other people around I wouldn’t have to worry about red or green lights and could just cruise along without even considering something like traffic. But I really don’t think I would have that many roads if I was here just by myself. The roads, the traffic lights, the people who built my bike, I could go on forever with all the people involved in my bike ride (but I promise I won’t). Even when we do something that is somewhat solitary we hopefully are aware of all the others who have helped make that possible.

So I might not be one to thank God specifically for the green lights (just as I don’t think he has a favorite baseball team), but I think we have plenty of opportunities to thank God for so much that is in our lives, and hopefully someone is thanking God for us.

Fr. Nick


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