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Lorida, Florida
Tir De , Gaelic for "God's Country"

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Spiritual Reflections
by Fr. Sean C. Mulcahy,

Talk for January 31, 2016
"Begin with the end in mind"

The seven habits of highly effective people by Dr. Stephen Covey is a very popular book and has sold over 15 million copies. In a chapter titled ‘Personal leadership” he outlines an exercise that involves visualization. He invites us to attend our own funeral through visualization. I quote: “ As you walk down to the front of the room and look inside the casket, you suddenly come f ace to face with yourself. This is your funeral, three years from today. All these people have come to honor you, to express feelings of love and appreciation for your life. What would you like the speakers to say about you and your life? What kind of husband, wife ,father or mother, son, daughter or cousin. What kind of friend? What kind of working associate. What kind of contributions, achievements would you want them to remember? Begin with the end in mind. This is a powerful exercise that will touch us deeply-our basic fundamental values.

This visualization exercise goes to our core –what do we stand for, who are we deep down, what is the basic direction of our lives. With the results of this essential spiritual meditation, we can begin today with the image, picture of the end of our life, your frame of reference, by which everything else is examined. And to help us live this way, St. Paul comes to the rescue in our second reading, with which we are all familiar –but we are to live it. “If I speak in human and angelic tongues, but do not have love, I am a resounding gong or a clashing cymbal. And if I have the gift of prophecy and comprehend all mysteries and all knowledge, if I have all faith so as to move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.”

Love is patient, love is kind. It is not jealous, it is not pompous, it is not inflated, it does not seek its own interests, it is not quick-tempered, it does not brood over injury, it does not rejoice over wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth . .love never fails.” Our gospel, Luke is trying to tell the Jewish people that God was the God of all people –even the widow and the general who were healed, even though they were not Jewish.

If  Paul's letter on Christ-like love is the recipe for a meaningful and graced life, then we owTe it to ourselves to frequently read and meditate on it, while putting :’ begin with the end in mind.’



















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