BY FR. ROY CIMAGALA
WHAT a difference a small act can do! I am referring to that practice of making a morning offering as soon as we get up from bed in the morning. It’s what saints and many other people have been doing to set the proper human and supernatural tone to their daily affairs, giving them a sense of direction and purpose for the day.
It’s usually done by greeting God as soon as one wakes up. The effort to give the first thought of the day to God is all worthwhile since it corresponds to the fundamental reality that our life is always, from beginning to end, a shared life with God, our Father, Creator, Savior, Sanctifier, yes, our everything.
Our life, of course, can be described in many, endless ways. It’s a shared life with God. It’s a life in the Spirit, a life of grace. It’s a participation in the intimate Trinitarian life of God. But we have to remember that we have been created in love and for love, and that love should be the basic governing principle of our life.
In other words, our life has to mirror the life of God himself, whose image and likeness we are. Since God is love, is self-giving, then we too have to live in love and in self-giving.
That means giving ourselves to God and to others. That’s what an offering is, what a gift is. It has to be given away freely,
because as our Christian faith tells us, it’s when we give that we receive, when we lose that we win, when we suffer that we gain in glory.
It’s a mysterious law, spiritual and supernatural, that goes way beyond our natural understanding of things, or our common sense. But that’s how it is. We need to live by that law, because outside of it, we expose ourselves to danger, to harm and to our own destruction.
In fact, given the temper of the times when we are almost systematically subjected to pressures and challenges, to moments of thrill and sadness, we need to have a very clear grasp of this basic law, otherwise we would just be lost. We have a greater need now to develop and maintain a supernatural outlook in life.
After greeting God, which we can do by saying ‘Serviam’ (I will serve), for example, we can start going through the expected different events of the day that we are going to have.
We can start figuring out how we can offer each event, each concern, project, etc., to God. We can start figuring out how we can sanctify them and how they can produce apostolic fruits, since all these things are not meant to be tackled technically only. They areactually occasions to develop our love for God and for others.
In this way, we can start the day on the right foot. We would be less prone to getting distracted, and much less, confused and lost, and in the words of St. Paul, “tossed to and fro, and carried about with every wind of doctrine, by the sleight of men, and cunning craftiness, whereby they lie in wait to deceive.” (Eph 4,14)
We have to devise plans and strategies to keep our supernatural bearing all throughout the day. Thus, the initial offering we make as we wake up in the morning ought to be renewed frequently as the day progresses. We have need for different acts of piety, spread in the different parts of the day, to keep ourselves going spiritually and supernaturally.
It would be great if we can encourage everyone to develop this habit of making morning offerings.