On Your Baptism Day, You Won the Biggest Lottery of All
Yesterday I learned that no one actually won the incredible amount of money from the Powerball Lottery from Saturday night. It will now reach over a billion dollars on the next try. I asked a few friends and family members what they would do with the winnings if they won this lottery. I was fascinated by some of the responses.
My sister Mary said she would set up a non-profit with 90% of the winnings. Then with the remaining money, she would throw a big party for her friends and family and pay off their bills. Wow! I thought this was a great idea. One friend said she would tuck the money away and live off the interest after helping her family and friends. I told Mary I would want to set up some homeless shelters, especially in areas that have extreme temperatures. I would want to name these shelters in honor of my brother, Mike, who did so much for people in need during his lifetime. This is, of course, after helping family and friends. I saw a news report from a journalist asking a man buying a lottery ticket what he would do if he won. His response came as a complete shock to her. He said “I would get some hookers and buy some cocaine.” She immediately turned to her cameraman and said “Oh my, we need to interview someone else.”
This same week with all the news coming out regarding the size of the Powerball Lottery, we learned that the forty year old country singer, Joey Feek, is now losing her battle and dying from stage four ovarian cancer.
She reportedly told her husband, Rory, “I have had many serious talks with Jesus. I told Him if He’s ready to take me, I’m ready to come home.” Rory Feek is overcome with sadness at the possibility of losing his wife, but he adds that she seems happy now to let go and let God.
It seemed ironic to me that most of us in this country are standing in line trying to win a massive Powerball lottery when this woman is likely the biggest winner of all. Why? Because she is having talks with Jesus and He is getting ready to take her home. Soon, she will have no more sickness and pain from the cancer; she will be gloriously happy receiving perfect love from Jesus Christ.
My husband tells me that the reason you buy a lottery ticket is so you can take part in buying a dream for $2. The possibility of winning is next to none. But, it’s the possibility that gets us to make that trip to 7-11 to buy the ticket.
The biggest irony of all to me is that we can all be winners; not participating in a possibility but being a part of something very real! Knowing that God has been with us since the moment we were conceived and will be with us forever is the win. OK, maybe it’s not necessarily like winning lots of money, which I would add from everything I’ve read; people who win these big lotteries are likely to lose it almost as quickly as they win it. But having faith in Jesus is never a loss. Jesus is always there extending his perfect love for us even when we mess up.
Father Dave talked at Mass this morning about our baptism connecting us to Jesus for all time through our Catholic faith. What a gift we have been given, as Catholics and Christians, that Jesus is our winning lottery ticket for all time! We can now admit to everyone: we won the biggest lottery of all.