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I am listening


I was at the supermarket searching for something for our dinner. A loud cry of ‘Neil’ made me look up, to see striding towards me an old friend from university days. I had blessed their marriage but lost touch as they shifted cities. After a warm hug we chatted excitedly, watched in by a bemused husband and shoppers streaming all around us.

Thinking back on that moment, it struck me how critical it was to make the most of the unexpected encounter; that going out of one’s way, even letting yourself be seen as silly, is well worth it when meeting God at the supermarket.

Zacchaeus had heard of Jesus, even felt stirrings of hope and fear rising within him when he heard Jesus was near. Once Jesus was at hand (but not in sight), he did not care what others thought of him, even as he clambered up the sycamore tree.

God also awaits us at the supermarket. God will speak to us when we least expect it, and where we least expect it. That is the time to forget polite behaviour and even other commitments. Just open your heart and say, speak, Lord, your servant is listening.

Father Neil Vaney, sm

Source: 31st Sunday year C1

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