Why spend your money on what is not bread?

(Isaiah 55.2)

Every man, every woman,
has certain needs.
And if we don’t satiate them, we remain frustrated.
If we feel hungry, we must go and gobble something.
If we feel thirsty, we are edgy until we drink.
If we are sleepy, we need to take a nap.
These are called physical needs.

But there are other even deeper needs.
There is the need for love.
Everyone has, embedded within them, a craving for affection:
a great desire to love and to be loved.
We all wish to find someone who understands us, values us,
someone for whom we are important.

This is how romance is born between man and woman.
This is how friendship starts.
It is basic for us to be important in the eyes of someone.
That I am special to somebody.

There is yet another key emotional need in life:
The need to be useful.
The feeling that we are doing something constructive here on earth,
That we are living for something,
That the world is not the same with or without us,
That we are not a vegetable occupying a bit of space,
Or a dog that runs and runs around in circles.

So man normally puts all his energy on work
woman on her children,
the teenager on his girlfriend and vice versa.
We priests do the same…
channelling all our efforts to basically satisfy these unconscious needs.

The tragedy is that too often
we look in the wrong direction.
We fix your eyes on things or people
who cannot fill the emptiness in our heart,
who cannot satisfy totally these needs.

The prettiest lady,
The charming of all children,
A well furnished house,
The best of health,
The wealth that we aspire for,
The most fulfilling apostolate that we may be doing,
None of these can satisfy our heart
because our hearts are too big to be satisfied with so little.
Everything and everybody is so changeable.
“The feelings of a fool are like a cart-wheel”,
says Ben Sirach,
“a fool’s thought revolves like a turning axle.”

What we need is someone who is grand enough
loves enough
strong enough
to satisfy totally this eternal thirst within us.

Does this person exist?
Christianity says, yes:
there is someone who can do all this.
His name is Jesus Christ.
He alone has words of eternal life.
Only with Him we can mature.

And that is why the fundamental question of our lives is one:
What shall I do so that this Jesus Christ will not remain on the fringe of our lives,
just another phantom
but will enter into the heart of hearts of our existence?
We scuttle so much after butterflies,
Why don’t we rather run after the Eagle?!

"He gives strength to the weary,
He strengthens the powerless.
Youths grow tired and weary,
The young stumble and fall.
But those who hope in Yahweh will regain their strength,
They will sprout wings like eagles,
Though they run they will not grow weary,
Though they walk they will never tire.

(Isaiah 40: 29-31)

(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission is hereby granted for any non-commercial use, provided that the content is unaltered from its original state, if this copyright notice is included.