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God created the world in six days, and he rested in the seventh. Recently, I was thinking about God Who, having created the world in six days, rested on the seventh. If I were God, I would not have rested on the seventh day. Instead, I would have stepped into the office for a few hours to make some embellishments and tweak certain adjustments with my creation. Take, for example, the mosquito. Has anyone ever figured out its function and purpose? I would have taken care of that problem. I would have checked out the structural integrity of the world so that no earthquake would ever take place. I would have played around with gravitation, perhaps lightening it so that we would not hurt so much when we fall. I would have looked at some other options regarding the transition from this life to the next. Death is a bit messy, so I might have opted for a transporter. The point is this–God could have made the perfect world, but did not. He did something better–he rested on the seventh day so that He could be with us.
The psalmist once wrote that the Lord is my shepherd and that he leads us to verdant pastures.
When I hear “verdant pastures,” I think of Crystal Lake with miles of belly-high alfalfa fields–sheep heaven. But that is not what they have in Palestine. They have small patches of green grass in miles of desert. Yet, the sheep neither worry nor complain. The sheep do not worry. They have something better than miles of alfalfa fields. They have a good shepherd. Sheep know that every living being with teeth loves to eat lamb chops. Sheep need protection.
When God brought the Israelites out into the desert to save them from Egypt, He could have built the Mall of America and supermarkets that would have met their every need. But He didn’t. They received something better–God stayed with them to make sure they had everything necessary.
When I came to Boston to serve at St. Clement, the church was old, dated, and in need of upgrades and repairs. The first thing I did was to request a feasibility study in order to know what had to be done. At the end of the study, a team of architects and professionals concluded that all I needed was ten million dollars and my problems would go away. I did not have ten million; I had something better. God was with us. We drew volunteers, donations in building supplies, and a happy crew of family, friends, and neighbors. The transformation of the church made us realize that we were not alone.
At times we have to look into our own personal feasibility study and note all the things that would be nice to have. Remember, however, that when we see such a list of needs, we have something much better. God is at our side. He is not fixing some black hole in some far away galaxy, or busy with a project in some distant place. He is not working; He is resting at your side waiting and wanting to be your God. God could have made the perfect world, but He gave us something better.Back to All Homilies