For Me
Off the Wall, October 20,

Recently upon leaving Mass at ay Holy Family Church in Latrobe, did I meet another parishioner coming out of a nearby door. Before long, we entered into a conversation and I learned she had just moved to our tourist community from Cleveland, Ohio. One topic led to another, and before long we settled on the fact that our society is everything but Christian.

I stated to her, “ Do you find a pattern that many people today are out for what they can get for themselves? People nowadays, more than ever, I think, base their whole pursuits in life around the philosophy, ‘What’s in it for me.’” Bobbing her head up and down, she stated, “I couldn’t agree more.”

For some reason, I’m glad we came to an agreement, as she could have disagreed. But at the end, we probably would have talked over points of view and settled on a common denominator.

Has one ever stated, “Am I just imagining this, or did it really happen? Sometimes it is a me-thing, and I’ll admit it, but in this case, when this young visitor to my place of worship so willingly and quickly agreed, I knew then and there that there must be something to it.

Even at the Latrobe Farmer’s Market, a mother of two agreed with me this the world has definitely geared toward personal gain and self-satisfaction. I don’t think I have to go any farther (maybe I should) to recognize that we are living in a for-me generation.

Maybe it comes down to this. As we get older, some of us tend to think differently, thus rendering various conclusions. I have only to think if I was that way when I was younger. Could it be according to one’s upbringing?

But those two words, “for me,” also resonate other ways, as well.

I often think of the soldiers overseas who may be in Israel, Afghanistan or Iran, who are putting their life on the line “for me.” That is definitely special to me. A matter of fact, I make an effort to approach any service individual and thank him or her from the bottom of my heart for services rendered. To have done to keep me free means more than one can imagine.

When was the last time you walked up to a police officer in your town, extended your right hand and stated, “Thank you, sir, for putting your life on the line for me and protecting me.” Or, you could also tell your neighborhood cop (constable on patrol), “I just want to say thanks.” I made the statement to some of officers in Latrobe, and one told me, “You know, few people have ever told us that. I really appreciate it.”

And how about our firemen? Don’t they risk their lives to save people and property? Have you ever walked up to a fireman and stated the same as one would a police officer? Being a cop or fireman is no easy job. A long and hard training go into making sure they can do their services to perfection just for you and me.

How hard is it to walk up to a public servant who is acting on behalf of us both and state that we are grateful for their service on our behalf?

But, I couldn’t write this commentary today, unless I highlighted the most important person who did something for you and me. I am speaking of none other than Jesus Christ. He is by far the greatest man Who ever lived on this earth.

His acts of dying for my sinfulness and that of the world, rising from the dead and being alive as our Intercessor to God are the most fantabulous acts ever committed.

I’ve heard it said by some that’s not for me; I don’t into that “God stuff.” I have responded to some by stating, “As hard as you’ve thought into persuading yourself there’s no God, use that same thoughtfulness, if that is the word, and reversing it into formulating a little bit of faith into that of a mustard and start walking with that tiny belief. Take baby steps, realizing He loves you and wants to walk with you throughout your life.

Once one realizes God, His Son, the Holy Spirit, His mother and all the angels and saints are in your corner, how can one say, God’s not for me?

Then, start attending Church. Pour out your heart to God. He’ll be listening!.

- Paul J. Volkmann
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To buy my book, Off the Wall Favorites, call me at 724-539-1951.