I Love You, Lord, My Strength

I Love You, Lord, My Strength

Sunday’s Readings

Existence is precarious. It is easy to forget this until we come face to face with our own frailty and finitude. While some of us can hide this vulnerability, it is painfully apparent for those of us whose lives depend on the hospitality of others every day. The Scriptures make special mention of widows, orphans, foreigners, and the poor. I also think of people with disabilities, especially my friends living in L’Arche communities, who navigate various cognitive and physical challenges with the support of assistants.

But that’s only the surface, for they struggle with heartache, too: communicating with those who misunderstand or infantilize them, doubting their self-worth, missing family members who live far away, grieving aging or deceased parents, desiring a romantic relationship that may never happen, grappling with questions of faith in God, and trusting again and again in the care of strangers who may become cherished friends but eventually leave to pursue their own dreams.

I Love You, Lord, My Strength

And yet, my friends are some of the most joyful, loving, and free people I know. Through their experiences of profound vulnerability, they teach me how my wounds can be the source of my gifts. They also show me what God’s love is like. Every time I visit, I feel like I am coming home because of the extraordinary welcome and acceptance I receive. St. Ignatius describes this love well when he writes in his Spiritual Exercises that love is “shown more in deeds than in words” and that it “consists in the mutual sharing of goods.”

Love of God and love of neighbor go together. Jesus also reminds us that we worship God when we have compassion for the most vulnerable among us. When we recognize our basic solidarity as creatures sustained by God’s grace, we can truly proclaim with the psalmist, “I love you, Lord, my strength.”

For Reflection:

  • How might my experiences of human frailty and finitude help me to grow in love of God and in love of neighbor?
  • How might I express solidarity with others who have disabilities, especially within the church?
3 replies
  1. Dr. Eileen Quinn Knight
    Dr. Eileen Quinn Knight says:

    Human frailty became an important aspect of my life when I was walking across the street and got hit by a car and ended up on the windsheild. It has taken me a long time to recouperate as both legs and the pelvis were broken. Dealing with a major infirmity, I received a great deal of love and support from the medical profession, They assisted me in every way they could. They brought meals to me and spent time with me. The priests of the parish brought me Communion frequently. It has almost been a year now since I experienced this tragedy but the Lord has sent people to help me on my journey. At times it was hard to accept the love they offeredas I wanted to be aware of the gifts God had given me to ‘rise up’but in doing so I became more aware of the graces from God and my neighbors. I realise especially the presence of the Holy Spirit as He prays with me frequently. I am more aware of the needs of people but still have a long way to go in consistently being aware of the grace of others shared with me..

  2. sonja
    sonja says:

    I have been reminded of my human frailty on a daily basis since Gaza has been bombed incessantly over the last month. Those who have left war zones and experienced hardship on their way to Europe, held on to hope during fearful times by believing “Tomorrow will be better.” Yet to all who live in Gaza, it seems that each day brings more trauma and loss as family and loved ones are torn from them. My heart bleeds for them and their tenacity to remain where they are despite what is happening around them. Mothers of the world unite in love and pray for the end of this violence and destruction of innocent human lives especially those who are most vulnerable, our children and those already in hospital from war injuries.

  3. Dr.Cajetan Coelho
    Dr.Cajetan Coelho says:

    Indeed existence is precarious. Lending a helping hand to those in need adds life to our life span.


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