for Sunday, January 26, 2014
The people who walked in darkness have seen a great light; upon those who
dwelt in the land of gloom a light has shone. Always the Prophet Isaiah is
able to raise our hopes and bring us joy. This prophecy is really about
the tribes of Israel, which disappeared along with others in the north.
Even though a tribe disappears, Isaiah can tell us that light will come
upon it. And now you and are members of those who walked in darkness and
dwelt in the land of gloom. Light has come upon us in Jesus Christ.
The First Letter to the Corinthians continues this theme of being separated
from Christ. It is we who divide Christ and who should long for unity in
Christ. Especially when we look at the divisions among us Christians, our
hearts should burn once more that we may all be one in Jesus Christ. We
don't have to worry about how or about when. We need only long for unity
and pray for unity.
In Matthew's Gospel we are brought back to the Land of Zebulun and the Land
of Naphtali - these two tribes among others which disappeared. This area had
become Galilee of the Gentiles, a place where non-Jewish people now dwelt
alongside of the Jews who were also living there. Thus the area of
Nazareth did not have a good reputation among observant Jewish people.
It is from here, a place without the wonder and glory of Jerusalem, that
Jesus begins to call his followers. Most of us are of that same type: not
the best in the world, not the most observant in the world, but people who
are seeking the Lord.
It is to us that Jesus speaks today: Come after me. Jesus continues to
call us to follow Him, to be formed by Him, to walk with Him in His life so
that we can share in His death and Resurrection.
We are also like these early followers in that we have doubts at times, we
wonder if we are foolish, we hear teachings of the Lord that we find
difficult. And yet we also realize that there is no other Lord who gives
life. To whom shall we go if we leave Him. We can be like Peter and doubt
and deny. We can be like Thomas and speak bravely about our conditions to
follow the Lord and believe in Him. In the end, there is no other and we
can begin to walk with joy with our Lord. All praise to Him forever.
Readings of the day:
First Reading: Isaiah 9.1-4
Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 1.10-13, 17-18
Gospel: Matthew 4.12-23
Reflections are available for the following Sundays: