The story of Elisha’s calling to be a prophet in today’s First Reading reminds us that a vocation in the family means sacrifice for everyone involved, but it is a spiritual blessing. Elisha wants to make one last gesture of material concern for his family before answering God’s call through Elijah’s invitation: by “burning his bridges” through the destruction of his yoke and oxen he is providing materially for them one last time, but that doesn’t mean the Lord will not watch over them for their sacrifice.
When the Lord calls someone to follow him in the priesthood or consecrated life the family doesn’t become irrelevant. That vocation is a gift and sacrifice from the whole family, and a source of blessings. Many a Mother with tears of pride has thought of the day when she’ll meet her Maker and be welcomed as the parent of a priest or religious.
If our loved ones are happy and blessed, we are happy and blessed. Let’s help them follow the Lord in whatever he invites them to do.
Readings: 1 Kings 19:19–21; Psalm 16:1b–2a, 5, 7–10; Matthew 5:33–37. See also 10th Week in Ordinary Time, Saturday.