for Sunday, September 8, 2013
We are invited this week to have strong foundations for our faith, to live
in wisdom and to recognize the hand of God in all that happens to us.
The first reading, from the Book of Wisdom, teaches us to have patience and
not to think that we immediately understand the ways of the Lord. This is
such good advice. Today, many people don't even believe in God while
others seem to believe that they are His spokesperson and interpret His
word according to their own pleasure.
The second reading, from the letter to Philemon, indicates that even
difficult situations, such as slavery, can be lived in the Lord. That is
not a justification for slavery. It is a simple acceptance that no matter
what happens, we can find the presence of God in every situation. People
who have spent long years imprisoned are often an incredible witness to
The Gospel today, from Saint Luke, speaks about the commitment of
discipleship. Jesus is totally clear: to follow Him will cost us
everything even as it gives us everything. We must be willing to give up
all in order to walk with the Lord. Jesus never asks us to give up what is
bad for us. He does ask us to give up some good things for the sake of the
Kingdom. That makes people unhappy today. We want to think that whatever
is good is allowed for me. Jesus is clear that such is not the case.
Jesus can ask us to leave behind our families, our wealth, our houses, etc.
It is all for the sake of the Kingdom.
The challenge from these readings is this: Do I have wisdom to recognize
what the Lord is asking of me here and now? Do I have the inner courage to
follow the Lord, no matter what He asks of me? Am I willing to see every
aspect of my life, here and now, in the light of God's love for me?
My sisters and brothers, do we want to follow the Lord? Or are we just
looking for a way to make sure that we don't end up in hell? Or are we
following the Lord for other reasons. There is only one reason to follow
Jesus: we have come to know His love, even if it is ever so little, at
work in our lives. We follow Him because we have come to believe in Him in
some way. May we follow Him with joy and grow in our capacity to give our
whole life over to Him.
Readings of the day:
First Reading: Wisdom 9.13-18
Second Reading: Philemon 1.9b-10, 12-17
Gospel: Luke 14.25-33
Reflections are available for the following Sundays: