Sunday, 3 May 2020

Curve Ball

No doubt many a priest has faced a complicated or perhaps a trick question from time to time from a member of his congregation. Never mind … it’s part of their job I suppose.

Remember that Jesus faced many a curve-ball by His opponents trying to catch Him out.

Father Ignatius is no exception.

He was visiting one of his parishioners in hospital the other day and quite unexpectedly came the curve-ball. It wasn’t meant in a malicious way at all; but more as a cry of help from a tired old body.

“You know Father,” said the patient lying in his hospital bed, “this is the third time this year that I’ve landed in hospital. It’s one check-up after another … and these wretched doctors can’t find what’s wrong with me!

“I sometimes think that God has it in for me.

“Do you think he loves all people the same? Because I can’t see it myself. Here I am in hospital yet again … whilst others are OK and walking out there freely.

“I think He has favorites and He looks after them better than others.

“What do you think Father; does God love every one the same?”

“No.” said Father Ignatius firmly.

The patient laughed.

“Now there’s a surprise … I thought you’d give me a lot of platitudes about us all being equal in the eyes of God; we’re all His children, and He loves us all the same … and yet you agree with me. Bravo Father Ignatius. So God does not love us the same. He has His favorites.”

“I did not say that,” replied the priest sitting by his friend’s bedside.

“Explain yourself then,” said the patient jovially.

“God does love us all,” continued Father Ignatius, “and His love has no favors towards one individual as opposed to the next. He loves us all equally in the sense that He created us all and He loves us even though we might sin and distance ourselves from Him.

“Yet His love is not the same towards everyone.”

“How so …” asked the patient with a glint of humor in his eyes.

“He loves each one of us according to our needs,” said Father Ignatius gently, “like an earthly parent would do.

“You have three children Fred; and I’m sure you love all three of them. You have no favorites.”

Fred nodded silently.

“However,” continued Father Ignatius, “let us imagine two of your children were very bright and would one day follow in your footsteps and manage your business. Whilst the third is perhaps less business minded, not very academic, and interested in doing his own thing … you’d still love him would you not?”

“Yes, of course. You know that Father!” said Fred sitting up in his bed.

“I know you would … but let’s take the analogy a little further. Suppose for instance one of your children had been born with an incurable illness … you would not love him any more, or any less than the other two; would you? You’d love them all the same but differently. If you see what I mean.”

“I think I do …” said the man with a smile.

“God loves all of us according to our needs.

“For example, some people are born very bright, and are well educated whilst others are not.

“I see them in church every Sunday. Some of our parishioners are well versed about religion and their walk with the Lord; whilst others, through a variety of circumstances, perhaps related to their background and up-bringing, are poorer in spirit. Their Faith and knowledge of the Lord is not as advanced as say, a theologian.

“Sure they believe and love the Lord; but their spirituality is simpler compared to others’. Because that’s all they know; that’s all they are able to comprehend.

“They love God, and pray as simply as they’ve been taught; and they try to obey His Word as best they can.

“Does God love them any the less than say an educated priest, a bishop or cardinal who have studied incessantly and are, supposedly, more pious?”

Fred laughed heartily at the mention of more pious clergy.

“I suppose not … He must love them all the same amount,” said Fred.

“Exactly … He loves them the same amount; but differently … each according to their need.

“And one more thing …” continued Father Ignatius, “He expects more from those who are educated and should know better.

“To those who have been given much, more is expected of them.

“So the educated clergy are expected to set a particularly good example to those they are meant to guide to Heaven … so I’d better watch out I suppose.”

Fred smiled as a nurse approached and interrupted the discussion.

“I have the results of your tests, Mr Temple,” she said indicating a private conversation.

“Oh don’t mind him …” chuckled Fred, “he’s a priest. He can always give me the last Sacrament before you dispatch me off!”

“Well sir … you are a little anemic and you need a lot of rest. It’s nothing serious and we’ll have you on your feet and out of here in no time” she said.

“That’s great … thank you” replied Fred as the nurse left.

“You see Fred,” said Father Ignatius, “God does love you differently. He obviously thought you needed to listen to a private sermon.

“One to one personal attention. You can’t have better than that!”



  1. This was a beautiful story Victor. I love happy endings and God supplies us with many of these...when He feels the time is right.
    Thank you for being one of His helpers.

    God's Blessings Always 🌷

    1. Thank you Jan for your kind words. I believe God helps us and loves us according to our needs, our capabilities, and even according to the amount of Faith we have. Some are weaker than others in this respect. Look at Peter, and then see what eventually he became.

      God bless you my friend.

  2. I have four children, I think I do have favorites, but then no. I want the best for all of them and worry the same for their safety and happiness. They are simply different.

    Nice Sunday message my friend.

    1. Well said, JoeH. I think we love our children all the same in amount and measure; yet we love them differently because each has different needs. Some are more capable of looking after themselves than others. Some are academic and others are not.

      God bless you and yours always.

  3. I would never have considered God's love quite this way! Much to ponder this morning. Like another blogger once put it, "Every day is a school day."

    1. I don't think God has favourites, Mevely. He created us all and loves us all. But because He gave us freedom to grow and express ourselves differently; some of us need more help, and caring and loving from Him than others. It is not the quantity of love but the type of love that differs.

      God bless you and love you as you need.

  4. We have a daughter and she is our favorite but she is our only child. :)
    Nice message, Victor

    1. Thank you for your kindness, Bill.

      God bless you and your family.

  5. Wonderful post! Thanks be to God! He loves me for who I am. Have a grand day!

    1. Indeed He loves you, Cathy. You are special to Him.

      God bless.

  6. I loved reading this story again, Victor, as I already have, and adored, this book. Thanks for brightening my day!

    1. I find this story rather comforting, Martha, as I am sure sometimes God must have His doubts about me!

      Thank you fro your kind words about my books and for your nice AMAZON reviews.

      God bless you and your family always, my friend.

  7. A brilliant answer! We love all of our children just as much, but different because each is different. A child who is disabled and needs more care isn't loved more just because s/he is getting more and different care.

    Then there's the fact that the trials in each of our lives are hand picked for us based on what He knows each of us need.

    1. Good points, Mimi. You are so right.

      God bless.

  8. "He obviously thought you needed to listen to a private sermon." This made me laugh out loud!

  9. You hit the nail on the head!! That curve ball was a homerun. I know from experience having four adult children, 10 grandchildren and 2 great grandsons. Do I love them all equally!! I love them differently, absolutely! Do they love me the each shows their love in their own way. Great Post!!!

    1. Thank you Wanda for your kind words about my post. Indeed, in life we love others and they love us differently.

      God bless you and your family always.



God bless you.