“God does not need you.”
David Calavitta began his talk by speaking these words. These are words that you don’t necessarily want to hear. They may cause feelings of doubt or worry or even fear. However, David did not end his message there. He continued that thought by saying, “God does not need you, and that’s good news. God wants you.” What a wonderful feeling to be wanted, to be longed for by someone, to belong. If God didn’t want you, He wouldn’t have created you!
God wants me? Why would he want me? I am not worthy of his love. These are thoughts that may run through our minds when we hear this message. However, David quoted Matthew 9:9:
“As Jesus passed on from there, he saw a man named Matthew sitting at the tax collector’s booth. He said to him, ‘Follow me.’ And he got up and followed him.”
Matthew was a tax collector, the worst of the worst, and Jesus called him. This verse reminds us that Jesus speaks to everyone, but he especially speaks to the sinners. He speaks to you. He wants you.
This story of Matthew is remarkable not just for Jesus’s actions, but also for Matthew’s actions. Matthew follows Jesus. He allows Jesus to speak to him, and doing this impacted the course of his life.
How do we do this? For few people, such as Matthew, one call may be all it takes. But for many of us, it takes many calls and many failed attempts on our end. We may be scared or mistrusting of God, whether it be from past pain or from lack of knowing Him. However there is hope. As we find in the Catechism of the Catholic Church, “At every time and in every place, God draws close to man.” We are called to discover Him in the moments of our lives, just as a baby discovers his or her own father or mother. We should run to him in times of happiness and sorrow and anxiety.
While David spoke so many profound words tonight, I would like to end with these words of his:
“God loves you to hell and back.”
“To God the Father, you are worth God the Son.”
Let us pray for the courage to follow Him and let Him speak to us this weekend and in all of the days that follow.