‘If you then, who are evil, know how to give your children what is good, how much more will the heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask him’ – Lk 15:13

Wrong Stereotypes
The world operates on stereotypes. A stereotype is an image, an impression or an idea that people generally hold about a person or thing. For instance, people in Nigeria believe that every person of northern origin is hausa or fulani and a muslim. Most people think that anyone from South-East Nigeria is Igbo and loves money. Some believe that if you are rich, then you have been blessed by God and you will be happy. Similarly, the poor are cursed and miserable. These are all wrong stereotypes. It is until we give ourselves room to encounter people that we see that not all rich people are greedy, stingy and snobbish and not all poor people are generous, selfless and accommodating. And there are as many happy poor and contented people as there are rich ones. But then, some stereotypes are good.
The Right Ones
People expect persons from northern Nigeria to be honest. People expect Yoruba people to be accommodating and easy-going. They expect Igbo people to bring business and development to a place. Nigerians are generally regarded as peace-loving people.  In a similar way, people expect Christians to live holy lives, love people and influence the society positively with Christian principles. When we betray good stereotypes, we create scandal, we erase the hope and trust which guides people. It is the presence of the Holy Spirit in a person that nourishes the right values and propels them to be agents of positive change. A commitment to your faith nourishes the life of grace in you. Grace signals the presence of the Holy Spirit. Be committed to your faith, knowing that it guides you and inspires others. Ask God for a fresh indwelling of the Holy Spirit who guides us to do what is good, true and beautiful always.
Prayer
Come Holy Spirit, dwell afresh in the hearts of all who believe. Transform us and renew our world through us.
Today's Readings
Mal 3:13-20; Ps 1:1-6; Lk 11:5-13