Monday, February 15, 2021

Monday of the Sixth Week in Ordinary Time

Sibling rivalry is revealed in the reading from Genesis: Cain kills his brother Abel out of jealousy, since God favored Abel’s offering over Cain’s. The rival, the competition between siblings, stems from the age old curse called “original sin,” which is the theological reason for how our world became so wounded and divided. Jealousy stems from our incessant need to control our relationships. Abel wanted to be the favored one, or at least on an equal plane with his brother. God had other intentions and we will never know why.

While we are all loved by God and created equally in God’s image, we are not all equal in our talents and abilities. This is a painful truth for most of us, particularly when we have a family relationship or a friendship in which the other “seems” more talented, lucky, successful, etc. perceptions can be so flawed, usually they are, which can create havoc and pain in our lives.

The remedy: be grateful for who you are and what you are, accepting your unique strengths and talents, but also your limitations. But this demands, for healthy living, that you accept the talents, gifts and limitations of the other. The pain we put ourselves through when we compare ourselves to anyone else.

Be at peace within yourself and in your own skin. Learn to be happy at the good fortune of those closest to you. Relish in their happiness, even if you are not in the same place emotionally. An evolved, compassionate human being, rooted in God, is one who always is happy for the other and wants what is good for them to happen.

Fr. Frank