He that gives good advice, builds with one hand; he that gives good counsel and example, builds with both; but he that gives good admonition and bad example, builds with one hand and pulls down with the other. – Francis Bacon: (1561 –1626: was an English philosopher, statesman, and author.)
Gospel Text: (MT 5:13-16)
Jesus said to his disciples:
“You are the salt of the earth.
But if salt loses its taste, with what can it be seasoned?
It is no longer good for anything
but to be thrown out and trampled underfoot.
You are the light of the world.
A city set on a mountain cannot be hidden.
Nor do they light a lamp and then put it under a bushel basket;
it is set on a lampstand,
where it gives light to all in the house.
Just so, your light must shine before others,
that they may see your good deeds
and glorify your heavenly Father.”
Jesus is actually referring to the salt losing its usefulness – How? – We fail to live up to this ideal of being “salt of the earth” when we prefer to stay in the safety of the “salt shaker” – so to speak – just staying in our comfort zone and safe world – rather than fulfill our destiny out in the world… which is to be the seasoning to those who face a “bland” existence; to serve as a preservative like the salt to keep the world from going bad… to preserve what is right and good and true.
Pope Francis said: “I prefer a church which is bruised, hurting and dirty because it has been out on the streets, rather than a church which is unhealthy from being confined and from clinging to its own security.”
We lose our saltiness – so to speak – our distinctiveness as Sons and Daughters of God – when we simply blend in with the world… when we look and sound and act as everybody else…
Jesus did not command us: “You ought to be the salt of the earth, should act like salt, or pretend we were salt, or attempt to be salt.” He said, “YOU ARE the salt of the earth.” – Referring to our identity – who we are – Meaning – We already have what we need to make a difference in the world… by virtue of our baptism in Christ.
Do you know people like this? When we encounter such people, they don’t have to tell us they are Christians. We know who they are. When we ourselves decide to take seriously the invitation to follow Jesus, we will not need to identify ourselves to the world. “ . . . they will know we are Christians by our love.”– –