for Sunday, February 16, 2014
What a long Gospel we have today! It is filled with wisdom and great
teachings. The basic message is clear: Know what you are doing, do good
and do it with your whole heart. We are expected to know what God wants of
us and to try to do it with our whole being.
Jesus criticizes those who simply argue about things in order to avoid
loving one another and treating one another with justice. Jesus is
pointing to us that we have the responsibility. It is not a matter of
looking at others and seeing how they fail to live up to God's law. No, it
is a matter of seeing the challenged aimed directly at us, at me. I must
walk the way of the Lord and seek His will.
The first reading today, from the Book of Sirach, tells us that if you
trust in God, you too shall live. This also speaks to this deep and
personal relationship that we are invited to live with God. We are not
trying to impress anyone else. We are trying to live the love that God has
given to us. This has been true through all ages.
Too often we can begin to think of doing God's will as simply following
directions to do the right things. The readings today are very clear:
doing God's will is a matter of having a heart that loves others because we
know that we are loved by God Himself. Actions must flow from this deep
relationship with the living God.
The First Letter to the Corinthians, from which our second reading today is
taken, also speaks of a wisdom that comes from God. God's wisdom is always
mystery. Mystery does not mean that we cannot know something, only that
the reality is enormous and we must work daily to understand it. Love is a
mystery because it can never be exhausted. Love is a mystery because it
always challenges us to go further. Love is a mystery because God's love
for us is infinite and we are to love in the same way.
My sisters and brothers, God wants us! He wants all of us. He wants every
bit of us. This world will change dramatically the more we give of
ourselves. What is most important in our world is to respond now to the
love that God pours out upon us. Let us walk in the love of God.
Readings of the day:
First Reading: Sirach 15.15-20
Second Reading: 1 Corinthians 2.6-10
Gospel: Matthew 5.17-37
Reflections are available for the following Sundays: