My family and I were out at dinner last light, celebrating my birthday. Even in these moments, contemplation of our Lord takes place.
As we sat down and the server took our orders, he had placed a few coasters down to hold our drinks. On the coasters were a picture of gift with the words “Loyalty Is Rewarded”. As I looked at the printed gift and pondered the words, immediately my thoughts were brought to our Lord on the cross and the small group of followers who stayed with Him. Looking at the picture of the Christmas gift on the coaster, on a side bar, were some words with the highlighted enlarged words “STEAK”. I thought of how we often rip through the wrapping without noticing at all the real gift. Would anyone notice the presence of our Lord in a crowded place as this, in such a simple way as this? Can anyone assess the real presence in our midst in Word?
If you look at the photo above, although not a photo of what I had seen, I will tell you what our Lord was showing me in the gift.
The ribbons in the cross pattern, showing me the Cross of our Lord and the bow in the center being our Lord on the cross.
“Loyalty Is Rewarded”
Constancy in allegiance to God or the things of God; steadfastness in fidelity to a person or cause, organization or enterprise. Implicit in loyalty is strong affection based on firm conviction that the object of one’s fidelity deserves the allegiance. (Etym. Latin legalis, of or belonging to the law, legal.)
And all while contemplating this, the server came back and took our orders. I had ordered a steak, cooked medium. You may say what does this have to do with anything? I did also at the time.
The server left and the conversation began again with all of us at the table. We prayed grace before our meal came.
I took hold of that coaster again as it was drawing my attention to the word “STEAK”. What is at steak? Well, our Lord was on the stake, and all of us are at stake. For some reason, I began to ponder the Gospel of Matt. 25:23
His master said to him, ‘Well done, my good and faithful servant. Since you were faithful in small matters, I will give you great responsibilities. Come, share your master’s joy.’
I began to tell our Lord interiorly, forgive me Lord, I ordered my steak medium and not well done. I hope the life I am leading is pleasing to you and I am never lukewarm.
The server returned and with him, brought our meal. As he placed my order in front of me, what should have been a steak cooked medium, was dark and black. It looked burnt. I stopped for a moment just staring at it. Recalling what was taking place in my contemplation of Him. Without saying a word, I cut into the black steak, and it was perfect.
This coming of our Lord, at Christmas, as we rip apart the wrapping to get to what is hidden underneath, may we never lose sight of Him in our hearts, His commands and His promise to us:
“Go, therefore, and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, until the end of the age.”
A blessed Second Week of Advent to all.