In today’s first reading Elijah brings a widow’s child back to life after calling upon the Lord.  St. Paul tells us in the second reading that the gospel he preaches is not of human origin but comes through a revelation of Jesus Christ.  In the gospel we see Jesus bring the son of a widow from Naim back to life.

Jesus is oft-times heard to say that he can only do and say what the Father wills.  We understand this through Jesus’ ministry of prayer, preaching, compassion, and healing.  And in today’s readings we meet three individuals who call upon God to use their gifts and talents for others.

We all have gifts and talents given to us by the Holy Spirit. As we develop these gifts and talents we must never forget who gave them to us.

So, calling upon the Holy Spirit as we leave the   Easter season behind and launch forth into “ordinary time,” let us ponder the following:

— Call to mind a few of your particular gifts and   talents

—Recall just once in the past week how you used a gift or talent for someone other than yourself?

—As you ponder this time in the past week when you used some gift or talent for another, did you hear yourself say:  “I did a good thing.” 

Or, did you hear yourself say, in the presence of our God: “We did well!”

—Fr. Tim Shepard, S.J. is a pastoral minister, librarian, and retreat director living at Colombiere, the Chicago-Detroit Jesuit retirement center in Clarkston MI.