In a Peanuts comic strip some years ago, Lucy decides that her little brother Linus has to learn to live without his security blanket. She asks him, “Linus, what are you going to do when you grow up? You can’t walk around with that security blanket when you are an adult.”
Linus answers, “I’m thinking seriously about having it made into a sport coat!” This answer does not satisfy Lucy so while Linus is taking his nap, she steals away his blanket, takes it outside and buries it in the ground. When Linus wakes up, he misses his blanket immediately. He goes into a claustrophobic panic. He screams, he shouts, he pounds the floor, he gasps for air, and cries. “I can’t live without that blanket!” And then he faints.
Snoopy, the trusty dog, sees Linus’ dilemma and rises to the occasion. He goes outside, sniffs out the blanket, digs it up, and brings it back to Linus. Linus is relieved and ecstatic. With one hand he grabs the blanket, and with the other he grabs Snoopy. He kisses Snoopy, he hugs him, he pats him, and thanks him over and over and over. The last picture in the cartoon shows Snoopy lying on his back on his doghouse and thinking this thought: “Every now and then my existence is justified.”
St. Luke’s family, helping others, comforting others, giving to others, encouraging others, reaching out to others…that is indeed the justification for our existence. This is what God meant for us to do. This is what Jesus taught us to do…and that’s why loving others gives joy to life and purpose to life.